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Jun 28, 2017

Monsanto beats profit expectations on soybean seed sale strength

Monsanto

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U.S. seeds and agrochemicals company Monsanto Co (MON.N), which is being bought by Germany's Bayer AG , reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit, helped by higher sales in its soybean business.

Sales of soybean seed and traits, the company's second-biggest business by revenue, jumped 29.3 per cent to US$896 million in the third quarter ended May 31, Monsanto said on Wednesday.

However, sales of corn seed and traits, the company's biggest revenue generator, fell 6.3 per cent to US$1.49 billion.

Monsanto agreed in September to a US$66 billion buyout offer from Bayer, that, if approved by regulators, would create a company commanding more than a quarter of the world market for seeds and pesticides.

Monsanto said on Wednesday it was working toward the completion of the merger by the end of the calendar year.

Bayer said last month it would sell its LibertyLink-branded seeds businesses, a key part of the asset sales required to satisfy competition authorities looking at the Monsanto deal.

Net income attributable to Monsanto rose to US$843 million, or US$1.90 per share, in the third quarter, from US$717 million, or US$1.63 per share, a year earlier.

Excluding certain items, Monsanto earned US$1.93 per share, handily beating the analysts' average estimate of $1.76, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.