BASF plans to acquire Becker Underwood for a price of $1.02 billion (€785 million). The company, headquartered in Ames, Iowa, is one of the leading global providers of technologies for biological seed treatment, seed treatment colors and polymers, as well as products in the areas of biological crop protection, turf and horticulture, animal nutrition and landscape colorants and coatings. Becker Underwood has 10 production sites worldwide and 479 employees. BASF came to an agreement with Norwest Equity Partners (NEP) to acquire Becker Underwood which has been a portfolio company of NEP since 2004. The purchase is subject to approval by the responsible authorities and legal closing of the transaction is expected by the end of 2012.
Becker Underwood is expected to achieve sales of $240 million (€185 million) for fiscal year 2012, ending on September 30. As part of the acquisition, BASF’s Crop Protection division will create a strategic global business unit called Functional Crop Care. The unit will merge BASF’s existing research, development and marketing activities in the areas of seed treatment, biological crop protection, plant health, as well as water and resource management with those of Becker Underwood. Becker Underwood’s animal nutrition business will be integrated into BASF’s Nutrition & Health division.