Companies want to bring more focus to underfunded crops, such as wheat.
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ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, U.S. — Executives at Monsanto Co. remain optimistic that a proposed combination with Bayer AG will close before the end of the year, especially in light of several other large mergers that have received regulatory clearance in recent weeks. In the meantime, Monsanto continues to turn out solid results.

Net income in the second quarter ended Feb. 28 totaled $1.368 billion, equal to $3.09 per share on the common stock, up nearly 29% from $1.063 billion, or $2.41 per share, in the same period a year ago. Net sales also increased year over year, climbing to $5.074 billion from $4.532 billion.

For the six months ended Feb. 28, net income totaled $1.397 billion, or $3.16 per share, up 72% from $810 billion, or $1.80 per share, a year ago. Net sales increased 14% to $7.724 billion from $6.751 billion.

In an April 5 conference call with analysts, Hugh Grant, executive chairman and chief executive officer of Monsanto, said the company continues to see an industry that is undergoing a “necessary and a healthy transformation to serve farmers better around the world.”

Monsanto_Hugh Grant_ CEO chairman of Monsanto
Hugh Grant, executive chairman and chief executive officer of Monsanto.

“Innovation is at the heart of the industrial logic for combining with Bayer, just as it was with the consolidation that we led in the industry 20 years ago,” Grant said. “Since then, we’ve seen scores of biotech, breeding and crop technology improvements, and our view is that the next 20 years will raise the level of agronomic performance even further. Very simply, this deal is about accelerating innovation, optimizing integrated solutions and expanding the offerings that will be available to farmers through broad licensing globally in the years to come. From delivering new choices even faster to expanding solutions in disease and insect control, our combination with Bayer is a real gateway to exciting possibilities in ag science.”

Specifically, Grant said he believes greater focus can be brought to historically underfunded crops, like wheat, as well as opportunities in geographies where agriculture may benefit from improvements in scale like parts of Asia and Africa.

“After outlining examples like these with growers, one thing is very clear, they want innovation and they fully recognize the role that it plays in bringing them solutions to run the profitable and sustainable operations necessary to meet the demand curves,” he said.