Expect More Than Standard Antitrust Scrutiny For ChemChina/Syngenta Deal
State-owned ChemChina has officially made an aggressive $43 billion bid for Swiss seeds and pesticides company Syngenta AG (ADR) (NYSE: SYT).
Following confirmation of the deal, Benzinga had the chance to speak with Chris Pultz of the Kellner Merger Fund regarding the possibility that the deal could face regulatory threats or delays and where a completed deal leaves Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON).
Speaking With Chris Pultz
When Benzinga asked about potential regulatory hurdles, Pultz said the deal could face some political pushback, but not from an antitrust perspective.
“This deal needs to be reviewed by the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States,” Pultz explained. “You have a Chinese state-owned company that is buying something that, even though it’s not intellectual property, it is important to the food chain. So the debate over whether it will be construed as being a ‘national interest’ here could create some political backlash.”
He added that the current election cycle would add to public pushback and pressure on regulators to block the deal in its current form, but Pultz believes that the deal will likely eventually go through.
Pultz concluded by noting that, with no sizable buyout targets remaining in the market, Monsanto has likely missed its major acquisition window if the Syngenta/ChemChina deal closes.
Benzinga broke the news of a potential ChemChina bid for Syngenta back on December 9, 2015.
Disclosure: The author holds no position in the stocks mentioned.
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