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.