Mulling Counterbid

Report: BASF Angles for DuPont

BASF chemicals factory worker orange-red lights monitoring source dpa
Is the light yellow or red for BASF's takeover plans?
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    If BASF’s reported bid is successful, it would torpedo DuPont’s merger with Dow Chemicals.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • Dow Chemical and DuPont, the two largest chemical companies in the U.S., agreed to merge in December.
    • The merger would place additional pressure on BASF, which has already taken a hit due to the collapse in oil prices.
    • BASF explored the possibility of a deal with DuPont, valued at $55 billion, at the same time it was considering a merger with the Swiss agrochemical company Syngenta last fall, Handelsblatt has learned.
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    Audio

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There are rumors of a coup in the global chemicals industry. German giant BASF is discussing options with bankers and advisers to submit a counterbid for U.S. rival DuPont, news agency Bloomberg reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

If successful, the bid would scupper Dow Chemical’s plans to merge with DuPont, which has a market value of around $55 billion, or €50.2 billion.

Although BASF is open to takeovers, company insiders and industry experts view a merger of Ludwigshafen-based BASF and DuPont, headquartered in Wilmington, Delaware, as unlikely.

“The deal ran its course,” a BASF insider told Handelsblatt. A company spokesman declined to comment on the speculation.

BASF shares were down 2 percent at €62.04 at the end of the morning in Frankfurt, trailing the German blue-chip DAX index, which fell 1.1 percent.

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