BASF has completed the acquisition of Becker Underwood from Norwest Equity Partners, a US-based private equity investment company, for a purchase price of US$1.02 billion (€785 million). With the acquisition, BASF is now a leading global provider of technologies for biological seed treatment as well as seed treatment colorants and polymers. BASF has also expanded its product portfolio in the areas of biological crop protection, turf and horticulture, animal nutrition and landscape colorants and coatings.
‘The acquisition fits well with our long term growth strategy. It will provide our customers with an even broader range of innovative solutions for agriculture, and it also provides our new colleagues with access to BASF’s global R&D platform as well as new markets and customers,’ comments Dr Andreas Kreimeyer, member of BASF’s board of executive directors responsible for the Agricultural Solutions segment and research executive director.
In the coming months, a detailed integration plan will be developed by a joint team of BASF and Becker Underwood employees. Most businesses of Becker Underwood will join the newly established global business unit Functional Crop Care as part of BASF’s Crop Protection division.
Within this new unit, BASF will merge its existing research, development and marketing activities in the areas of seed treatment, biological crop protection, plant health, as well as water and resource management with those of Becker Underwood.
Becker Underwood ’s animal nutrition business will be integrated into BASF’s Nutrition & Health division.
The newly formed global Functional Crop Care unit will become effective on 1 January 2013. It will be headed by Dr Juergen Huff, senior vice president. Dr Peter Innes, currently CEO of Becker Underwood, has accepted the position of global senior advisor to the Crop Protection division. He will support the integration of Becker Underwood into BASF and the implementation of the Functional Crop Care unit.
‘Now we are focused on an integration which is as seamless as possible for our customers and our employees,’ states Markus Heldt, president of BASF’s Crop Protection division. ‘Becker Underwood will be a cornerstone of our Functional Crop Care unit and we are looking forward to further developing our business together with our new colleagues.’
In 2011, BASF’s Crop Protection division reported sales of around €4.2 billion and is expecting another record year in 2012. With its products and services, BASF helps growers to improve their yields and the quality of their products.
BASF is the world’s leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas. It combines economic success, social responsibility and environmental protection. Through science and innovation, it enables its customers to meet the current and future needs of society. The company’s products and system solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring healthy food and nutrition and helping to improve the quality of life. BASF posted sales of about €73.5 billion in 2011 and had more than 111 000 employees as of the end of the year.