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CEO: Bayer Will Not Shy Away From Major Acquisitions

From M2 Europharma (November 27, 2009)

27 November 2009 - Werner Wenning, chief executive officer of Bayer (ETR: BAYN), said on Thursday evening that the German specialty chemicals company will keep its eyes open for takeovers, including major ones.

However, according to Wenning, having stable financial foundations is very important to Bayer and the company will not put those at risk by executing adventurous acquisitions.

Healthcare is one of Bayer’s divisions in which the company intends to promote growth via takeovers. The division was unable to participate in this year’s wave of acquisitions on the US veterinary medicine market but hopes for future opportunities. The Animal Health unit posted sales worth EUR963m (USD1.44bn) in 2008.

Contrary to other pharmaceutical companies, Bayer does not have to worry about expiring patents for important drugs in the next three years, the chief executive officer said. The first major drug of Bayer which will have its patent expire will be antibiotic Avalox in 2014.

Wenning confirmed Bayer’s 2009 outlook for limiting the slump of adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) to around 5%, adding that the goal is challenging. According to the chief executive officer, there has been an increase in demand at Bayer’s synthetic materials division MaterialScience since April.

Wenning chose not to comment on the market rumours of a possible acquisition of MaterialScience by Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC).

(EUR1.0 = USD1.491)


Posted: November 2009