Fair trade regulator Competition Commission today launched a public scrutiny of finer details of the proposed USD 66 billion Bayer-Monsanto deal, which would create the world's largest seeds and pesticide firm.
Fair trade regulator Competition Commission today launched a public scrutiny of finer details of the proposed USD 66 billion Bayer-Monsanto deal, which would create the world’s largest seeds and pesticide firm. The comments with respect to the Bayer-Monsanto deal need to be submitted to the Competition Commission of India (CCI) within 15 days, along with supporting documents on how the merger can adversely impact the concerned person or entity, the CCI said in a public notice. It further said that “the Commission is not likely to consider unsubstantiated objections”. The CCI places a deal for public consultation if it is of the “prima facie opinion that the combination has, or likely to have an appreciable adverse effect on competition”. Prior to this, the fair trade regulator had launched similar public scrutiny in the case of Ranbaxy-Sun Pharma and Holcim-Lafarge merger deals, among others. The deal between Bayer-Monsanto, both of which have good presence in India, was announced in September 2016. On September 14, 2016, Bayer and Monsanto entered into a definitive agreement and plan of merger by which the entire shareholding of Monsanto will be acquired by Bayer. As a result of the proposed combination, Monsanto will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bayer. Bayer operates in pharmaceuticals, crop science, consumer health and animal health with a broad range of products in each division. While, Monsanto is a sustainable agricultural company engaged in the production of agriculture and vegetable seeds, herbicides/weed control solutions.
As per a notice filed by Bayer before the CCI in October 2016, the “proposed combination raises no competitive concern in any of the overlap products”. In India, both entities have presence in production and sale of vegetable seeds, cotton seeds as well as in production and sale of non-selective herbicides, according to that notice. The parties believe that the proposed combination does not give rise to competition concerns regardless of the manner in which the markets are delineated.
“The parties are engaged in complementary business practices and the proposed combination seeks to capitalise on the synergies arising as a result of the complementaries. The parties, therefore, believe that it is not necessary to definitely conclude on market definition for the purposes of proposed combination,” as per Bayer. Bayer expects the proposed combination to close by early this year.