The proposed acquisition of St. Louis-based Monsanto by a German company has taken a big step toward completion. Monsanto shareholders Tuesday morning voted overwhelmingly in favor of the roughly $65-billion deal.
Shareholders will received $128 per share once the acquisition is complete, which is expected next year.
In a statement provided by the company, Monsanto Chief Executive Officer Hugh Grant called the vote an important milestone, "as we work to combine our two complementary companies and deliver on our shared vision for the future of agriculture."
His counterpart at Bayer echoed those thoughts.
"The acquisition of Monsanto is driven by our strong belief that this combination can help address the growing challenges facing farmers and the overall agriculture industry today and in the future," said Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer AG.
The focus now shifts to gaining regulatory approval in 30 jurisdictions. Bayer plans to start filing documents with regulators in several countries this month.
If the acquisition does not pass regulatory scrutiny, Bayer would have to pay Monsanto a $2 billion breakup fee.
Company officials remain confident the acquisition will be complete next year, with the crops division and North American operations based in St. Louis.
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