Syngenta Shareholders Back Dividend Tied to ChemChina Deal

  • ChemChina purchase of Swiss company for $43 billion on track
  • Demare hosting annual general meeting for investors today

Syngenta AG shareholders approved a special dividend to be paid after China National Chemical Corp.’s $43 billion takeover of the Swiss agrochemical company closes, as management dismissed talk the deal could be blocked by U.S. regulators.

Regulatory reviews of the deal by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S., or CFIUS, don’t pose a threat to the transaction, Chairman Michel Demare said at an annual general meeting on Tuesday.

“CFIUS causes no anxiety for me, for the board or the executive team,” Demare told more than 1,000 investors assembled at the St. Jakobshalle sports and music arena in Basel, where the company is based.

Demare insisted the transaction with ChemChina, as the company is known, was the best option for Syngenta shareholders, who backed the resolution to pay the one-time dividend of 5 Swiss francs a share. Chief Executive Officer John Ramsay said this month Syngenta is still aiming to close the deal by the end of this year.

The ChemChina bid values the company at about 458 francs a share. Syngenta is trading about 13 percent below that price, at 399.30 francs as of 1:27 p.m., amid a perceived risk that the purchase could be delayed by regulators including CFIUS.

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