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Monsanto Buys Agradis Assets

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On Wednesday, agricultural conglomerate Monsanto (NYSE: MON  ) announced it has acquired "select" assets of privately-held "sustainable agricultural solutions" company Agradis, for an undisclosed sum. Monsanto bought the Agradis name, its R&D site in La Jolla, Calif., and also its collection of microbes used to improve crop productivity.

Agradis was formed in 2011 by Mexican investment firm Plenus, S.A. de C.V., in partnership with Synthetic Genomics Inc, a privately-held company led by J. Craig Venter -- probably best known as the founder of human genome researcher Celera Genomics (now owned by Quest Diagnostics (NYSE: DGX  ) ). Unsurprisingly for a firm in which Venter was involved, Agradis's stated aim was to research "genomic-driven solutions" to improve agriculture.

Post-acquisition, what remains of Agradis -- certain sweet sorghum breeding and genetic optimization technologies, as well as "a novel product used to prevent fungal growth on fruits and vegetables" -- will be moved into a new venture owned by Synthetic Genomics and Plenus, to be known as AgraCast.

Financial details regarding the transaction were not disclosed. Shares of Monsanto declined 0.2% in Wednesday trading, closing at $102.73.


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Rich Smith

As a defense writer for The Motley Fool, I focus on defense and aerospace stocks. My job? Every day of the week, I'm monitoring the news, figuring out the winners and losers, and tracking down the promising companies for you to invest in. Follow me on Twitter or Facebook for the most important developments in defense & aerospace, and other great stories.

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Related Tickers

10/8/2015 3:54 PM
DGX $63.01 Up +0.33 +0.53%
Quest Diagnostics CAPS Rating: ****
MON $89.27 Up +1.21 +1.37%
Monsanto CAPS Rating: ***