Friday, April 26, 2019

"Bayer gets Monsanto profit boost but legal burden mounts"

From Reuters:
German drug and farming supplies company Bayer posted a 45 percent gain in quarterly core earnings thanks to the acquisition of seed maker Monsanto, while the legal burden it took on with the deal mounted.

Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose to 4.19 billion euros ($4.67 billion), it said on Thursday, edging past the 4.12 billion euro average analyst forecast in a Reuters poll.

Bayer said 13,400 plaintiffs were seeking damages, alleging that use of the company’s glyphosate-based weedkillers caused their cancer, up from 11,200 in January.

Bayer has seen about 30 billion euros ($34 billion) wiped off its market value since August, when a California jury in that lawsuit found that Monsanto should have warned of the alleged cancer risks.
It will face shareholders’ anger at its annual general meeting on Friday.

“We continue to believe that we have meritorious defense and we intend to defend ourselves vigorously in all of these lawsuits,” the company said.

On Wednesday, Bayer launched an appeal with a California court to throw out the first glyphosate-related judgment for $78 million in damages.

When including Monsanto’s pro-forma 2018 results in the comparison, revenues at Bayer’s Crop Science division from pesticides and seeds were broadly flat at 6.35 billion euros, excluding currency effects...MORE