Adrian Percy, head of research and development at Bayer CropScience, and Robb Fraley, Monsanto chief technology officer held an informal press conference at Commodity Classic to discuss the proposed nuptials of their companies. Both Percy and Fraley spoke highly of Monsanto’s seeds and traits and Bayer’s chemistry, but took pains to point out how much better they will be when those strengths are combined.
“One of the problem with those systems is the coordination of those systems has never really been enabled,” Percy pointed out. “So we’ve consistently had herbicides arriving on the market and traits arriving perhaps a decade later. With this combination we have the opportunity to co-develop, to do this kind of work consecutively, so we can develop on one side the trait and on the other the herbicide.”
“One of the things we’ve come to the conclusion of in the last three or four years is, that as a company we just needed to invest more if we’re going to bring these innovations to farmers,” Fraley says of Monsanto. “As we’ve gone through [the merger proposal] and looked at it– we’ve had a long history of working together, we admire their innovation and their capabilities. It’s that combination that’s going to allow us to invest more. It’s that combination that’s going to let us invest smarter and it’s that combination, really importantly, that’s going to bring integrated solutions together, which, I think, is really key to brining product enhancements to farmers.”
Promising integrated solutions has been a hallmark of this merger from the beginning, but Fraley paints of picture of what that will truly mean. He compares these solutions to what Amazon offers, lots of choice, lots of options, plenty of transparency, suggestions for better future shopping, reduced costs and a simplified process.
Listen to the full press conference here: Bayer/Monsanto Merger Press Conference