A High School Saga - The Courtship of Syngenta by Monsanto Appears to be Over



Remember back in high school when you chased the really good looking girl in class? In your mind you couldn’t see anything other than being in a relationship with her. She occupied your thoughts and dreams 24/7. But, she was not interested in the least. After asking your dreamy date to the school dance or a movie over and over again (to only be told repeatedly, “NO!”) — sorry if I have brought back some bad high school memories for some of you —   you decided to save yourself from the embarrassment of chasing an impossible dream, you decided to lose interest completely.

This is exactly how the Monsanto pursuit of Syngenta looks to have played out this morning. After a seemingly long courtship involving a very unwilling Syngenta telling Monsanto, “I’m just not ready for a relationship at this point,” Monsanto has decided to focus on bettering themselves or finding a new hot classmate to chase.  [Okay here is what they really said today]

After a new 47 Billion USD offer in the last week, Syngenta was reportedly getting closer to giving a YES to Monsanto. Both Bloomberg and Reuters have indicated through this courtship that Syngenta continues to feel the Monsanto offers are undervalued and is concerned over the anti-trust regulatory hurdles that a potential relationship could face.

So, this morning Monsanto is pulling all of the Syngenta pictures out of its locker and looking to the future. Does this mean Syngenta is confident in its strategy to rebuild its US corn seed business? Or maybe the company feels there is a better merger or acquisition partner out there [think about Dow AgroSciences or BASF].  Whatever Syngenta does next I wouldn’t be surprised if Monsanto has decided to reverse the high school courtship and will make Syngenta chase them for a while.

Like all young love, these things take time to develop.  Sometimes they end in life long love and sometimes they are forgotten once new love is found.

Who knew the seed and crop protection business could be so high school?

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