Bloomberg

(Bloomberg) -- Syngenta AG Chief Executive Officer Erik Fyrwald is interested in looking at assets that could come to market as part of a tie-up between Bayer AG and Monsanto Co., in what’s seen as the last major wave of consolidation among leading players in the agrochemical and seeds industry.

“The majors will have consolidated, so I think in the future there’ll be more bolt-on-type deals of smaller companies that fill gaps where there are less overlaps, less competitive concerns,” Fyrwald said in an interview in Brussels on Monday. China National Chemical Corp. is in the final stages of acquiring Syngenta for $43 billion.

A series of mega-deals is shaking up the agrochemical and genetically-modified seeds industry, with Dow Chemical Co.’s planned merger with DuPont Co. today getting the go-ahead from European regulators in return for asset sales. Bayer plans to take over Monsanto, and Syngenta said it’s particularly interested in any seeds assets, Fyrwald said.

“We’ll have the firepower, the financial strength to continue to invest in our business and make acquisitions that make sense,” Fyrwald said. “We’ve been reassured that we will have an investment grade balance sheet.”

BASF SE is also considering making a bid for Bayer agriculture assets, valued at an estimated $2.5 billion. Bayer is selling canola, cottonseed and herbicide businesses, as well as a genetically modified crop technology, to get the green light for its $66 billion merger with Monsanto.

To contact the reporters on this story: Alice Baghdjian in Zurich at abaghdjian@bloomberg.net, Stephanie Bodoni in Brussels at sbodoni@bloomberg.net, Nikos Chrysoloras in Brussels at nchrysoloras@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Tara Patel at tpatel2@bloomberg.net, Andrew Noël, John Bowker

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