Just get out of here – that was the very clear message from the shareholders of the pharmaceutical and agrochemical company Bayer on Monday. The share price of the Dax-listed company from Leverkusen temporarily lost a fifth of its value after Bayer gave its shareholders two bad news at the weekend: First, another defeat in a glyphosate lawsuit. And then, even more seriously, a failure in a drug trial from which the pharmaceutical division had hoped for an annual peak sales potential of more than 5 billion euros.
Bayer has lost more than 7 billion euros in value in just a few hours, not even after the first lost glyphosate lawsuits after the controversial takeover of the American seed company Monsanto. In order to bring Bayer's share price to this level, a global financial crisis was recently necessary. Now the Dax group is doing it all on its own.
In the middle of the storm is the new chairman of the board, Bill Anderson. He may look around in amazement, as he is not responsible for either the one, glyphosate, or the other, the drug study. But as the new CEO, he stands for the strategy and the hopes that shareholders had raised. Expectations and pressure are high. And the more the share price falls, the louder the voices become that Anderson's internal restructuring plan to increase efficiency is not sufficient.
Bayer still has promising new drugs in its pharmaceuticals division, some of which are already on the market. But the hope for the anticoagulant asundexian was particularly high – which is why the disappointment is now just as heavy. Anderson's strategy for the pharmaceutical division is in question. And suddenly, the sword of Damocles "splitting" hovers over the company again.