One of the biggest deals announced in 2016 came a step closer to completion today.
Shareholders of US seeds company Monsanto gave their backing to a $66bn (£52bn) takeover by German chemicals firm Bayer.
Monsanto said that on a preliminary tabulation, approximately 99 per cent of all votes cast, representing around 75 per cent of outstanding shares, voted in favour of the deal.
Under the terms of the deal, Monsanto shareholders will receive $128 per share in cash when the transaction is completed.
Monsanto said today that the deal, which is facing a number of regulatory hurdles, is expected to close by the end of next year.
“This is an important milestone as we work to combine our two complementary companies and deliver on our shared vision for the future of agriculture,” said Monsanto chairman and chief executive Hugh Grant.
“By bringing together our expertise and our resources to drive this shared vision, we can do even more together to benefit growers around the world and to help address broad global challenges like climate change and food scarcity.”
After months of negotiations, the board of Monsanto accepted Bayer’s fourth takeover bid in September. The German company’s first bid, of $122 per share, was lodged in May.