A German law firm has filed lawsuits against Bayer in a Cologne regional court on behalf of investors who are seeking about $2.48 billion in compensation in connection with Bayer’s $63 billion purchase of Monsanto.
Bayer did not fully disclose the risks associated with litigation over the use of Roundup, the TILP law firm said. U.S. plaintiffs suing over health concerns tied to Roundup use have won verdicts in state and federal court totaling more than $2 billion, but those awards were reduced by later rulings to about $133.2 million.
Bayer has appealed the one federal appeals court decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, contending the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act preempts the state law claims brought by the plaintiffs. It still faces thousands of lawsuits over Roundup from plaintiffs who claim it caused cancer.
The Supreme Court has asked for the views of the U.S. Solicitor General before deciding whether to take the case.
“An issuer of listed securities must immediately and fully inform the capital market of inside information,” TILP attorney Axel Wegner said in a news release. “We are convinced that Bayer has not done this, either in its financial reports or in ad hoc releases."
Looking for the best, most comprehensive and balanced news source in agriculture? Our Agri-Pulse editors don't miss a beat! Sign up for a free month-long subscription by clicking here.
The lawsuits are based on purchases of Bayer shares in the period from Sept. 14, 2016 to March 19, 2019. The transaction closed in 2018.
In a statement, Bayer said, “We consider the claims regarding the allegedly flawed capital market communication in connection with the Monsanto acquisition to be unfounded.”
The company said it “complied with the law and complied with its publication obligations. We are also convinced that we have carried out appropriate due diligence concerning the Monsanto acquisition. Investigations by independent experts confirm that the Bayer Board of Management acted in accordance with its obligations. We will defend ourselves vigorously.”
For more news, go to www.Agri-Pulse.com.