"Bayer to sell vegetable seeds business"

Bayer plans to sell its global vegetable seeds business and allow BASF exclusive access to its digital farming data in an effort to address EU antitrust concerns over its $63.5 billion purchase of Monsanto, Reuters reports.

Bayer clinched a deal in October last year to sell its seed and herbicide businesses to BASF for 5.9 billion euros ($7.2 billion).

Bayer’s vegetable seeds business, which operates under the brand Nunhems, has more than 1,200 seed varieties in 25 vegetables crops.

The company has offered to divest the vegetable seeds business as a unit including its intellectual property rights, locations and production sites to a new entrant in a move that rules out bids from private equity firms, sources said.

To assuage regulatory concerns about its collection of data and information about farms known as digital agriculture, Bayer will also give BASF an exclusive license to its digital farming platform, the sources said.

Another source said that rival agribusiness Syngenta is very interested in the vegetable seeds operation but that there are also other interested parties.

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