- Associated Press - Monday, May 23, 2016

After 2015’s blistering global buyout pace, this year is shaping up to be quite the sequel with Bayer’s $62 billion attempt to buy Monsanto and create a global seed giant.

The proposed deal between German drug and chemical maker and Monsanto is the sixth-largest cross-border acquisition ever, according to financial markets platform Dealogic.

There has been more than $494 billion in cross-border deals already in 2016, the third highest of all time, Dealogic said. The biggest year for cross-border deals was in 2007, when $822 billion in deals were made, followed by 2015.

The same formula that drove last year’s buyout bonanza still exists, including the fact that mergers beget mergers. When two companies in a sector combine, their competitors seek to do the same in order to compete. Combined with continued low interest rates that make borrowing cheap, huge stockpiles of cash held by corporations, and a lackluster environment for organic growth, there is every reason to expect another gangbuster year for mergers and acquisitions.

Here’s a look at the 10 biggest cross-border deals of all time.

1. U.K.-based telecom company Vodafone AirTouch buys Germany’s Mannesmann AG

Deal value: $172 billion

Deal announced: November 1999

2. Belgium-based beer maker Anheuser-Busch InBev offers to buy U.S.-based SABMiller

Deal value: $117.4 billion

Deal announced: October 2015 and is pending.

3. Group of banks including U.K.-based Royal Bank of Scotland, Belgium’s Fortis and Spain’s Banco Santander buy Netherlands-based ABN Amro

Deal value: $95.6 billion

Deal announced: April 2007

4. Netherlands-based oil and gas company Royal Dutch Shell buys U.K.-based BG Group

Deal value: $66 billion

Deal announced: April 2015

5. U.K.-based oil and gas company British Petroleum buys U.S.-based Amoco

Deal value: $64.3 billion

Deal announced: August 1998

6. German drug and chemical maker Bayer offers to buy seed company Monsanto

Deal value: $62 billion

Deal announced: May 2016 and is pending.

7. U.K.-based telecommunications company Vodafone buys U.S.-based Airtouch Communications

Deal value: $61.5 billion

Deal announced: January 1999

8. Belgium-based beer maker InBev SA buys Anheuser-Busch

Deal value: $59.6 billion

Deal announced: June 2008

9. Italian energy company Enel and Spain’s Acciona buy Endesa

Deal value: $52.6 billion

Deal announced: April 2007

10. Swiss drug maker Roche Holding buys U.S.-based Genentech

Deal value: $46.8 billion

Deal announced: July 2008

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Source: Dealogic

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