Agribusiness behemoth Cargill Inc. said it plans to split off its majority 64 percent stake in fertilizer-maker Mosaic Co. (NYSE: MOS), in a transaction valued at $24.3 billion.
Under terms of the deal Cargill will exchange 179 million Mosaic shares for Cargill stock held by Cargill investors.
Cargill will subsequently exchange its remaining 107 million Mosaic shares for Cargill debt held by third parties.
The Mosaic shares will be sold through a spate of secondary offerings.
“This transaction will give us more of a free hand to create long-term value for shareholders and increase our flexibility to pursue our strategic and financial goals,” Jim Prokopanko, Mosaic’s chief executive officer, said.
A report on Reuters indicated that Mosaic might become an attractive takeover candidate given that higher grain demand will spur higher fertilizer prices.
The transaction remains subject to approval by Mosaic’s minority stockholders who would receive $200 million if Cargill terminates the transaction.