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Supply Chain

Bunge Shareholders Approve Merger With Viterra, Closing Expected In Mid-2024

By Reuters
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Bunge Shareholders Approve Merger With Viterra, Closing Expected In Mid-2024

Shareholders of global grains merchant and oilseeds processor Bunge approved the company's acquisition of Glencore-backed Viterra during a shareholder meeting this week, Bunge said in a statement.

The merger, which will create a company worth $34 billion including debt, is expected to be finalised in mid-2024 after closing conditions are met and regulators have signed off on the deal, Bunge said.

The shareholders' approval brings Bunge closer to wrapping up the deal that is unprecedented in size in the global agricultural sector and will create an agribusiness giant nearer in global scale to rivals Archer-Daniels-Midland and Cargill.

'Vote of Confidence'

"We appreciate our shareholders' vote of confidence in our strategy ... Our team is focused on effectively running our operations while also planning for a successful integration," Bunge CEO Greg Heckman said in statement.

Bunge shareholders on Thursday also approved the issuance of 65,611,831 common shares and a move of Bunge's incorporation to Switzerland from Bermuda.

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Bunge's Viterra acquisition would make the world's largest oilseed processor more dominant as it aims to capitalise on soaring demand for vegetable oils to produce biofuels.

The buyout is being closely scrutinised by regulators concerned about how consolidation would impact the agriculture sector. Canada's minister of transport said last week the Canadian government is reviewing the deal.

Market Volatility

Volatility fuelled by Russia's invasion of fellow grain exporter Ukraine had buoyed profits for crop merchants last year as they used global networks to manage supply disruptions and meet firm food demand.

ADM and Bunge reported a drop in second-quarter profits from record year-earlier levels, though they raised full-year earnings guidance, with a bumper Brazilian soybean harvest supporting processing margins.

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