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UPDATE 1-Bayer sees consolidation in crop chemicals, seeds
May 15, 2015 / 9:51 AM / 3 years ago

UPDATE 1-Bayer sees consolidation in crop chemicals, seeds

* Bayer sees consolidation regardless of Monsanto-Syngenta outcome

* Syngenta has rejected Monsanto’s $45 bln bid but deal seen alive

* Bayer CropScience is No.2 to Syngenta in crop chemicals

* Bayer does not comment on possible role in consolidation (Adds details on proposed Monsanto-Syngenta deal, more quotes from Bayer CropScience CEO, shares)

By Ludwig Burger

FRANKFURT, May 15 (Reuters) - German drugs and chemicals group Bayer believes further consolidation in the crop chemicals and seeds markets, is likely regardless of the outcome of Monsanto’s bid for Syngenta.

“It remains to be seen when, in what form and with which partners the consolidation will advance,” Bayer CropScience Chief Executive Liam Condon said in an emailed response to questions from Reuters.

Bayer, the world’s second-largest crop chemicals provider after Syngenta, declined to say whether it would seek to play an active role in buying assets sold as part of any Monsanto-Syngenta deal or in other market consolidation.

Swiss Syngenta has rebuffed a $45 billion cash-and-shares offer from U.S. seeds giant Monsanto, but sources have told Reuters Monsanto is still working on the deal and Syngenta does not consider it dead.

Monsanto commands about a quarter of the $40 billion global seeds market while Syngenta’s own seeds business has a global market share of 8 percent and could be worth between $6 billion and more than $8 billion.

It will have to be sold because authorities are expected to block Monsanto from entrenching its dominance of the U.S. soy and corn seeds market.

“The leading market positions of Monsanto and Syngenta in their respective businesses... mean a merger will not be easy. Both may have to make big concessions,” said Condon.

“Irrespective of that, further market consolidation and a stronger integration of expertise is to be reckoned with. In our view, these affect the areas of chemical and biological crop protection, seeds and relevant key technologies and processes.”

Shares in Bayer were up 1.2 percent to 132.50 euros by 0904 GMT and were the top gainers in a 0.4 percent-firmer German blue-chip DAX. (Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Writing by Georgina Prodhan; Editing by Thomas Atkins and Keith Weir)

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