ChemChina extends public tender offers for Syngenta to November 8

ZURICH (Reuters) - ChemChina on Tuesday extended by almost two months the deadline for Syngenta SYNN.S investors to tender their shares as the Chinese company seeks to complete a $43 billion takeover of the Swiss pesticides and seeds group.

People use an escalator outside the headquarters of ChemChina (China National Chemical Corporation) in Beijing, China, February 4, 2005. REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo

Investors in Basel-based Syngenta now have until Nov. 8 to tender their shares unless this is further extended, ChemChina said in a statement. The previous deadline, which had already been prolonged, was Sept. 13.

“All of the other terms and conditions of the tender offers remain unchanged and ChemChina continues to expect to conclude the transaction by the end of the year,” ChemChina said.

The companies are awaiting some regulatory approvals for the deal and need to keep the tender offer open during this period, a Syngenta spokeswoman said.

Syngenta stock had eased 0.1 percent to 432.30 Swiss francs by 0905 GMT (0505 ET), still below the offer price of $465 per share in cash plus a special dividend of five Swiss francs.

At current exchange rates, the offer is worth nearly 461 francs a share including the special dividend.

Clearance for the takeover last month from a U.S. national security panel removed significant uncertainty over the deal.

Several U.S. lawmakers and groups representing farmers had expressed fears over a Chinese state-owned company being in a position to influence the U.S. food supply.

The United States reviewed the deal because more than a quarter of the company’s seeds and crop protection revenue last year came from North America.

The current discount to the offer price, stemming from some uncertainty whether the deal will go ahead, has slowed down the tender process, one asset manager said.

Reporting by Joshua Franklin and Rupert Pretterklieber; Editing by Michael Shields and Mark Potter