German chemicals and pharmaceuticals giant Bayer withdrew from a battle to buy US-based Schiff Nutrition International on Tuesday, ruling out an increase to its bid against a rival counter offer.
The company's board "continues to believe that the merger transaction would represent a logical and strategic addition for Bayer's Consumer Care business", it said in a statement on the internet site of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
But it added that it had come to the conclusion that entering a competitive bidding process "would result in a price outside Bayer's set financial criteria".
Last week, Britain's Reckitt Benckiser made a higher offer than Bayer's bid for Schiff Nutrition, a leading maker of vitamins and nutritional supplements.
Bayer said on October 30 that it had agreed to buy Schiff Nutrition in a deal worth $1.2 billion (920 million euros).
The British group's offer valued the company at $1.4 billion.
A spokeswoman for Bayer declined to comment further due to legal reasons.
Schiff Nutrition, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, has a workforce of some 400 and generated sales of $259 million in its business year ended May 31.
Explore further: MasterCard, Zwipe announce fingerprint-sensor card