Last week, while many business analysts watching in horror as global stocks tanked across the world, one agricultural company’s stock bucked this downward trend. For the week, the stock prices for Syngenta actually gained more than 2%.
This had little to do with actual product sales and more to do with rumors that the company would soon merge or be acquired by another agribusiness interest. Last year, Syngenta’s then management board rejected a $47 billion takeover attempt by Monsanto. And while the St. Louis, MO-based manufacturer of Roundup is still attempting to engage Syngenta, various reports indicate that the Swiss company is inching closer to a deal with China National Chemical Corp. (ChemChina). According to one business report, a formal agreement between these two companies could be in place within the next few weeks. However, other reports say that one group of Syngenta shareholders remains opposed to any deal with ChemChina.
Regardless of which suitor ultimately ends up with Syngenta, it’s clear the company remains in play in the increasingly active crop protection/seed supplier consolidation game. In fact, the company’s current Chairman Micheal Demare has gone on record saying that the Syngenta is looking at “multiple deal partners” right now. Besides Monsanto and ChemChina, other companies mentioned include Bayer AG and BASF SE.
With the ink still wet on the recent Dow-Dupont merger agreement, it seems as if 2016 will be the year when more such deals among major agribusiness companies take place eventually. As always, time will tell . . .