Bayer said it was targeting growth in adjusted core profit of 7% to 9.6% this year, driven by sales of agriculture products and pharmaceuticals, despite facing multiple legal cases in the US over cancer claims.
Bayer is understood to be proposing to pay as much as $8bn (€7.1bn) to settle more than 18,000 US lawsuits alleging its Roundup herbicide causes cancer.
As Bayer management digs in against a growing shareholder rebellion over the acquisition of Monsanto, attention will shift from the German company’s headquarters back to US courts.
Bayer’s management retains the backing of its supervisory board, its chief executive said, after pressure on the company increased when a second jury in the US ruled its glyphosate-based Roundup weed killer caused cancer.
Bayer says the number of US lawsuits brought against newly acquired Monsanto has risen to about 8,000 from 5,200 previously after the company was told to pay damages for not warning of alleged cancer risks of glyphosate-based weedkillers.
Bayer offered $62bn (€55.2bn) to buy Monsanto, deepening investor concern that it’s stretching its finances to become the world’s biggest seller of seeds and farm chemicals.
Bayer has made an unsolicited takeover offer for Monsanto in a bold attempt by the German company to snatch the last independent global seeds producer and become the world’s biggest supplier of farm chemicals.
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