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Grain trader Viterra in talks to merge with rival Bunge – source


By Anirban Sen

(Reuters) – Global grain trader Viterra is in talks to merge with U.S. rival Bunge Ltd, according to a person familiar with the matter.

There is no certainty that Viterra, part-owned by Switzerland-based mining and trading giant Glencore, will be able to reach an agreement on the terms of a deal, the source said, requesting anonymity as these discussions are confidential.

Shares of Bunge were trading at $92.89 apiece on Thursday, valuing the company at about $14 billion.

Viterra, formerly known as Glencore Agriculture, made the headlines in 2017 for a failed takeover approach to Bunge, one of the giant names of global grain trading, then valued at $11 billion.

In May 2017, Bunge rebuffed Glencore after the latter made an informal approach to discuss “a possible consensual business combination.”

Glencore had publicly said it was reviewing options for its interest in Viterra, looking to unlock more value.

Glencore, Viterra, and Bunge declined to comment. Bloomberg first reported on the talks between Viterra and Bunge.

(Additional reporting by Deep Vakil in Bengaluru, Gus Trompiz in Paris, Clara Denina in London and Karl Plume in Chicago)

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