The Outperformers 2014

A bumper harvest

With GM crop field trials getting the go-ahead, the seed company's stock is blooming

Soumik Kar

This is one company on our list of outperforming stocks that perhaps needs no introduction. Monsanto — the world’s largest multinational seed company and the bane of seed nuts everywhere — has so far been hailed as much for its technological breakthroughs as it is reviled for its genetically modified (GM) crop practices. Once hailed as the company of the year in 2009 by Forbes magazine, Monsanto still managed to top Covalence’s 578-strong list of unethical companies in 2011. India is no stranger to this dichotomy. The global giant’s listed arm is currently present in the country in two agricultural verticals — the development, marketing and distribution of hybrid corn seeds under the brand name Dekalb and the sale of glyphosate-based herbicides under the Roundup brand. Another unlisted Monsanto subsidiary — a 50:50 joint venture with Mahyco — is engaged in the sub-licensing of Bt cotton seeds, a source of sustained controversy for the MNC. But it is the listed arm Monsanto India Limited’s dream run (up nearly 400% over the past year) that we are focused on.