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In this May 23, 2016 file picture the Bayer AG corporate logo is displayed on a building of the German drug and chemicals company in Berlin, Germany. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

Bayer agreed to take over Monsanto for $66 billion


Bayer,  a global chemical and pharmaceutical giant, has agreed to purchase controversial agricultural giant Monsanto for $66 billion.

The deal, which is expected to close by the end of 2017, would be the largest cash buyout in history.

Bayer plans to pay $128 a share for Monsanto, more than what it had originally offered back in May.

Monsanto has been widely criticized for its genetic modification of food.

The merged companies would sell almost 30 percent of the world's seeds.

One of the biggest concerns critics have about the deal, as Reuters points out, is that it will take Monsanto (read: jobs) out of the U.S. 

But Bayer and Monsanto aren't alone in the agri-chemical merger game.

The Wall Street Journal notes that rival seed developers Dow Chemical, DuPont and Syngenta AG have all struck mergers in recent months.

The deal, however, still needs to get regulatory clearance.

Despite expected pushback from regulators, Bayer shares jumped on the deal news.

We are entering a new era in agriculture.
Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant

"We are entering a new era in agriculture - one with significant challenges that demand new, sustainable solutions and technologies to enable growers to produce more with less. This combination with Bayer will deliver just that," Monsanto Chairman and CEO Hugh Grant said in a statement about the news.

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