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Bayer Investor Calls For Company To Be Broken Up


Bayer needs to make major changes, including “de-merging” two of its three business arms, investor Artisan Partners has told Reuters, adding to a chorus of demand for change from other investors.

[Image source: Wikimedia]


Rumors have been growing for some time now that the corporate marriage between German drug firm Bayer and American agrochemicals goliath Monsanto may be heading for divorce. Under increasing shareholder pressure following a dramatic slump in Bayer’s stock price over the past 8 years, the German company’s notorious CEO Werner Baumann was recently replaced with the former head of Swiss drugmaker Roche, Bill Anderson. Baumann had played a leading role in pushing through Bayer’s disastrous $63 billion takeover of Monsanto in 2018.

Through acquiring Monsanto, Bayer inherited over 100,000 lawsuits filed by people who say they were harmed as a result of exposure to the agrochemical company’s glyphosate-based herbicide Roundup. The filing of these suits followed an announcement in 2015 by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) that glyphosate was “probably carcinogenic to humans”. Studies have since provided “compelling evidence” that the chemical increases the risk of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system.

Settling the Roundup lawsuits has already cost Bayer around $11 billion. Legal costs have added still further to this figure. In this situation, with Bayer’s stock price having nosedived by more than 60 percent since 2015, it is easy to see why the firm’s investors are pushing for Monsanto to be cut off and sold.

To read more about the possible breakup of Bayer, and learn about the company’s dark history of putting its profits before human health and life, see this article on our website.