Syngenta announced today the signing of an agreement to acquire from Monsanto its global hybrid sunflower seeds activities for a consideration of $160 million, on a cash and debt-free basis. The asset deal includes germplasm, development and breeding of hybrid sunflower seeds. The business recorded sales of $75 million in the 2008 fiscal year and has leading positions in key markets. Syngenta's sunflower seeds business is the global market leader with sales of more than $200 million in 2008.
"This acquisition is an excellent addition to our global sunflower business. These activities will further strengthen our position in Europe and Latin America, key regions for growing sunflowers, and expand the range of our offer to growers," said Davor Pisk, Chief Operating Officer Syngenta Seeds.
Sunflower oil is a high value vegetable oil which is low in saturated fats and mostly used in food applications. Globally, sunflowers are grown on around 24 million hectares. Major sunflower producing countries are Russia, Ukraine, Argentina, France and Central Europe. The sunflower seeds market is currently valued at around $700 million with more than 75% of the value coming from developing markets. The transaction is subject to the approval of regulatory authorities.