Germany’s Bayer sells pest control business for $2.6 billion

BERLIN — German chemical and health care company Bayer said today it is selling a U.S.-based pest control business to private equity firm Cinven for $2.6 billion.

Bayer said the Environmental Science Professional business, which is headquartered in Cary, N.C., had about 800 employees last year. It specializes in “environmental solutions” for pest, disease and weed control in non-agricultural areas.

Bayer board member Rodrigo Santos said in a statement that the sale of the business, which the company said it planned to divest in February 2021, “allows us to focus on our core agricultural business.”

The sale is expected to close in this year’s second half, and the proceeds will be used to reduce Bayer’s net financial debt.