Monsanto acquires Brazilian sugarcane companies
Nov. 5, 2008
Monsanto Company is diversifying its portfolio with new investments in sugarcane. The company announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Aly Participacoes Ltda., which operates Brazilian sugarcane breeding and technology companies CanaVialis S.A. – the world's largest private sugarcane breeding company – and Alellyx S.A., an applied genomics company focused on developing biotech traits primarily for sugarcane. The acquisition of Aly Participacoes Ltda., worth US $290 million, will be paid with existing excess cash. Monsanto intends to retain the leadership and employees at the two companies and focus on developing the businesses.?
Sugarcane is planted on almost 7 million hectares in Brazil. According to Fernando Reinach, executive director of Votorantim Novos Negocios – the current owner of Aly Participacoes – the acquisitions of CanaVialis and Alellyx by Monsanto will allow the companies to reinforce their technology portfolio, which will help Brazil meet the demand for sugar and ethanol in the intermediate and long terms. Additionally, says Reinach: "Monsanto's expertise in advanced breeding and trait development combined with CanaVialis' and Alellyx's knowledge of the genetics of sugarcane will help growers to substantially increase productivity in a shorter period of time."?
The pending acquisitions of CanaVialis and Alellyx are Monsanto’s second and third major investments in Brazil over the past year. In 2007, Monsanto acquired Agroeste, a Brazilian corn seed company, and announced $60 million in investments to expand its seeds research and production. In 2007, Monsanto established a licensing and trait-collaboration agreement with CanaVialis and Alellyx to develop and commercialize Roundup Ready and Bt insect-protected technologies for Brazil’s sugarcane growers.
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