Bayer CropScience LP has announced the establishment of a Seed Treatment Business Unit within its U.S. Business Operations.

With its recent purchase of Crompton Corporation’s 50 percent share of Gustafson LLC, Bayer CropScience gained full ownership of the Plano, Texas-based Gustafson. Bayer CropScience already held 50 percent of the joint venture. Gustafson is North America's largest researcher, manufacturer and marketer of seed treatment products and related equipment.

“We are very excited about the integration of the Gustafson operations into our company and anticipate a smooth transition as we take steps to combine the seed treatment businesses of both organizations into one unit,” says Bill Buckner, designated Head of U.S. Business Operations for Bayer CropScience. “Our customers remain our top priority as we continue this integration.”

The new business unit will be responsible for business strategy, portfolio management and seed company sales. Rick Turner, currently the President of Gustafson, will head the new unit. It will be located at the Bayer CropScience Region Americas headquarters in Research Triangle Park, N.C.

Gustafson business and R&D functions, which are located in Plano and McKinney, Texas, respectively, will relocate to North Carolina. This transition will take place over the next 12 months to ensure no disruption to customer focus and supply, business operations or research activities. Gustafson employs 221 people in the United States; 82 of those individuals currently work in Plano and McKinney.

According to Buckner, the newly integrated seed treatment business will incorporate the best of both organizations to enhance Bayer CropScience’s ability to offer solutions to growers. “The newly integrated business will provide a strong development program, a complete portfolio and strong technical support,” he says.

In addition, Bayer CropScience will establish a Seed Technology Center with a separate seed treatment research and development team focused on support for seed treatment development, quality assurance and formulation development. To ensure that R&D activities remain close to the business, the Seed Technology Center also will be located in Research Triangle Park.

Bayer CropScience LP is the U.S. business of Bayer CropScience, which has its global headquarters in Monheim, Germany. Bayer CropScience, a subsidiary of Bayer AG has annual sales of about EUR 5.8 billion (2003).