State-owned ChemChina launches S$61.6b bid for Switzerland's Syngenta

BASEL (REUTERS) - China's state-owned ChemChina will make an agreed US$43 billion (S$61.6 billon) bid for Swiss seeds and pesticides group Syngenta, the companies said on Wednesday, marking the largest overseas acquisition by a Chinese firm.

The deal accelerates a shake-up in the global agrochemicals industry and is a setback for US seed company Monsanto , which made an unsuccessful US$45 billion move for Syngenta last year.

The offer, at US$465 per share, will allow for dividend payments to Syngenta shareholders of up to 16 francs per share, including a special dividend of 5 Swiss francs to be paid conditional on closing, they added.

The offer is equivalent to 480 Swiss francs per share, Syngenta said.

"The discussions between our two companies have been friendly, constructive and co-operative, and we are delighted that this collaboration has led to the agreement announced today," ChemChina Chairman Ren Jianxin said. "We will continue to work alongside the management and employees of Syngenta to maintain the company's leading competitive edge in the global agricultural technology field."

Shares in Syngenta closed on Tuesday at 392.3 Swiss francs.