Mosaic Request for Early Share Buyback Blocked

Mosaic Co. (MOS), the largest U.S. fertilizer producer, said Cargill family members blocked its request for an early buyback of $7.2 billion of shares.

Mosaic was split off from commodity trader Cargill Inc. in 2011, which left 129 million Class A shares in the hands of Cargill family members and charitable trusts established by the late Margaret A. Cargill.

Mosaic has been in talks with those parties following the second anniversary of the announcement of that transaction last month, Plymouth, Minnesota-based Mosaic said today in a statement. While the Margaret Cargill trusts supported a negotiated buyback of the stock before Nov. 26, the family members declined to amend the agreement that governs when and how the shares can be sold.

“Mosaic is disappointed in its inability to effect share repurchases this summer and looks forward to initiating share repurchases after Nov. 26,” Mosaic said in the statement.

About half of the Class A shares are held by the estate of Margaret Cargill, the late granddaughter of company founder William Cargill, and the other half by members of the Cargill family, Mosaic Chief Financial Officer Larry Stranghoener said on a May 13 conference call.

Closely held Cargill divested its 64 percent Mosaic stake to allow trustees of the Margaret Cargill estate to sell all its Cargill shares. The transaction was completed May 2011.

To contact the reporter on this story: Christopher Donville in Vancouver at cjdonville@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Simon Casey at scasey4@bloomberg.net

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