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Bayer crop science division president steps down

Rodrigo Santos will succeed Liam Condon as head of Bayer’s crop science division.

Liam Condon, president of Bayer’s crop science division, is stepping down at year’s end. His replacement will be Rodrigo Santos, who is currently chief operating officer of the crop science division of Bayer and responsible for the global commercial operations of the company’s agriculture business.

Bayer said in news release that Condon is planning to pursue career opportunities outside of Bayer, and move the end date of his contract from December 31, 2023 to December 31, 2021.

“We are extremely pleased that Rodrigo Santos will assume leadership of our crop science business, bringing more than 25 years of experience in agriculture to the role,” said Norbert Winkeljohann, chairman of the supervisory board of Bayer AG, in a news release. “Rodrigo Santos is a very customer centric leader, with a strong capacity for execution and innovation. The crop science division is extremely well positioned to set industry standards in terms of innovation and sustainability. The focus will now be to build on this foundation in the coming years in order to fully realize the significant potential for value creation.  

“We would like to warmly thank Liam Condon for his achievements during over 30 years at Bayer,” he added. “Over the past nine years, he has successfully led and strategically transformed the Crop Science Division. We wish him all the very best for the future.”

Santos has been chief operating officer of Bayer’s crop science division since June 2021. After the acquisition of Monsanto in 2018, he led the crop science business in Latin America. A Brazilian national, Santos has spent 23 years with the company in sales, marketing, strategy, and business development roles located in Brazil, the United States, and Eastern Europe. He graduated with a bachelor of science degree in agricultural engineering from Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz - ESALQ/USP and holds a master of business administration from FGV/Ohio University.  

Condon presided over numerous changes and events while president of Bayer’s crop science division that include:

  Bayer’s purchase of Monsanto in 2018 and subsequent integration. 

 Lawsuits that stem from accusations that glyphosate in its Roundup brand causes cancer. Bayer has defended its product, pointing to numerous studies that show that glyphosate does not cause cancer. 

 Settlement of Roundup lawsuits and off-target dicamba litigation. However, the Roundup settlement was rebuffed by a federal judge.

 Pilot projects for a pricing strategy called outcome-based pricing. Under this plan, farmers would pay for a certain metric, such as a specific yield goal, rather than buy inputs by the seed bag or herbicide jug. 

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