German chemicals group Bayer is preparing to kick off the sale of pest control unit Bayer Environmental Science (BES) this summer with a price tag potentially topping 2 billion euros ($2.4 billion), people close to the matter said. The agrichemicals giant, looking to reduce debt in the wake of its $63 billion purchase of U.S. peer Monsanto in 2016, is working with Bank of America on the sale, the people said, speaking anonymously as the information is not public.

Bayer is planning to market the unit, which supplies products like pesticides for golf courses and rodent protection for warehouses, to peers such as Scotts Miracle-Gro, ICL as well as private equity groups, the sources said.

BES last year saw revenues increase by 7.6% to 1.1 billion euros, while most other units of Bayer’s CropScience division saw sales slump on weak trading in North America. Bayer is only divesting the business for professional users with sales of 600 million euros, Chief Executive Werner Baumann said in an analyst call last month.


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Source: Reuters

Reporting by Arno Schuetze. Editing by Alexandra Hudson and Mark Potter