German pharmaceuticals giant Bayer is increasing its offer to purchase American rival Monsanto. Together, these two companies would form “a juggernaut in the genetically modified seeds and pesticides business,” according to German news website DW.com:
Bayer raised its offer to $127.50 (114.26 euros) per share, which would bring the deal’s total to around $66 billion including debt from Monsanto, though neither concern confirmed the overall sum.
The last known offer Bayer made was for $64 billion with debt, but the American producer of the controversial herbicide glyphosate turned it down. Investors in the US would like to see Bayer go as high as $135 per share, according to Reuters.
A legal opinion written by two former Justice Department officials from the Antitrust Division on the potential merger pointed out that “A merger will mean the new Bayer-Monsanto conglomerate will control nearly 70% of the cotton acreage in the United States – unacceptably high by antitrust standards. It would also have unacceptable market concentration in wide swaths of commercial seed development and sales for other commonly used varieties, including traited canola, soybeans, and corn developed in North America.”
You can read the legal opinion in full at BayerMonsantoMerger.com.