(Reuters) – U.S. grains trader Archer Daniels Midland Co (ADM.N) could reach an agreement to buy smaller rival Bunge Ltd (BG.N) as early as this week, Bloomberg reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter. (bloom.bg/2Egl41h)
Bunge’s shares were up 5.6 percent in premarket trading. ADM, which is expected to report its quarterly results on Tuesday, was up more than a percent.
Reuters, citing a source, reported last month that ADM had proposed a takeover of Bunge.
The proposed deal comes as large grain traders that make money by buying, selling, storing and shipping crops have struggled in recent years with global oversupplies.
Thin margins have squeezed core commodity trading operations, including those of ADM, Bunge, Cargill Inc and Louis Dreyfus Co, which together are known as the “ABCDs” and dominate the industry.
New York-based Bunge, which rebuffed an acquisition offer from Glencore (GLEN.L) last year, operates in more than 40 countries and is Brazil’s largest exporter of agricultural products. Chicago-based ADM has customers in 160 countries.
As of Friday’s close, Bunge had a market value of about $11 billion, while ADM was valued at $23 billion.
ADM spokeswoman in an email said the company does not comment on “rumors or speculation”. Bunge declined to comment.
Reporting by John Benny in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel
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