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Origin Agritech Announces Date for Special Meeting of Shareholders

DES MOINES, Iowa, March 2, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Origin (Origin Agritech Ltd., NASDAQ: SEED), an agricultural biotechnology trait and seed provider, announced that it will hold a special meeting of stockholders in connection with the sale of both the production and distribution segments of Origin's commercial corn seed assets on April 13, 2017 at 11:00 a.m., United States Central Time, at the Company's office located at The Financial Center, 666 Walnut Street, Suite #1554, Des Moines, IA 50309.

The Company stockholders of record at the close of business on February 28, 2017 will be entitled to receive notice of the special meeting and to vote their shares, either in person or by proxy, at the shareholder meeting. The proxy materials will be distributed to stockholders commencing March 2, 2017.

The transaction is intended to orient the Company as a multi-national seed development company capitalizing on its biotechnology assets and employee skills in research and development. This will allow the Company to focus on strategic partnerships and licensing opportunities both within China and around the globe to drive future revenue and profit growth.

As previously announced on September 26, 2016, Origin announced the sale of its proprietary China-based commercial seed business for RMB 400 million (approximately USD$60 million) to Beijing Shihui Agricultural Development Co, Ltd. ("Beijing Shihui").  The sale includes both the production and distribution segments of Origin's commercial corn seed assets. The Company intends to shift to a licensing model for its biotech traits and germplasm which will serve as a new revenue growth opportunity for Origin.  Future company revenue is expected to be generated by charging royalties and license fees for its superior corn seed inbreds and hybrids as well as for the commercial use of its biotech seed traits.  As part of the transaction, the Company will retain its corn breeding and biotech research and development capabilities, which include modern laboratories, extensive field testing networks and off-season winter nursery in Hainan Province, to expand and pursue germplasm and trait licensing opportunities. Through Xinjiang Originbo Seed Limited, Origin also will maintain its "Green Pass" status, allowing it the competitive advantage of introducing new hybrid varieties to the Chinese market through an expedited government approval process. Origin will also retain its start-up operations in the United States.

Origin's shareholders who need assistance in completing the proxy card or voting instruction form or have questions regarding the Origin special meeting may contact Origin's proxy solicitors: The Proxy Advisory Group LLC , 18 East 41st Street, 20th Floor New York, New York  10017; Phone: (212) 616-2180.

About Origin Agritech Ltd.

Origin Agritech Limited, founded in 1997 and headquartered in Zhong-Guan-Cun (ZGC) Life Science Park in Beijing, is China's leading agricultural biotechnology company, specializing in crop seed breeding and genetic improvement, seed production, processing, distribution, and related technical services. Leading the development of crop seed biotechnologies, Origin Agritech's phytase corn was the first transgenic corn to receive the Bio-Safety Certificate from China's Ministry of Agriculture. Over the years, Origin has established a robust biotechnology seed pipeline including products with glyphosate tolerance and pest resistance (Bt) traits. Origin operates production centers, processing centers and breeding stations nationwide with sales centers located in key crop-planting regions. Product lines are vertically integrated for corn, rice and canola seeds. For further information, please visit the Company's website at: or

Forward-Looking Statements

This communication contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. In this context, forward-looking statements often address expected future business and financial performance and financial condition, and often contain words such as "expect," "anticipate," "intend," "plan," "believe," "seek," "see," "will," "would," "target," similar expressions, and variations or negatives of these words. Forward-looking statements by their nature address matters that are, to different degrees, uncertain, such as statements about the consummation of the proposed transaction and the anticipated benefits thereof. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are based on certain assumptions and expectations of future events which may not be realized. Forward-looking statements also involve risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the company's control. Some of the important factors that could cause the company's actual results to differ materially from those projected in any such forward-looking statements are: fluctuations in energy and raw material prices; failure to develop and market new products and optimally manage product life cycles; ability to respond to market acceptance, rules, regulations and policies affecting products based on biotechnology and, in general, for products for the agriculture industry; outcome of significant litigation and environmental matters, including realization of associated indemnification assets, if any; failure to appropriately manage process safety and product stewardship issues; changes in laws and regulations or political conditions; global economic and capital markets conditions, such as inflation, interest and currency exchange rates; business or supply disruptions; security threats, such as acts of sabotage, terrorism or war, natural disasters and weather events and patterns which could affect demand as well as availability of products for the agriculture industry; ability to protect and enforce the company's intellectual property rights; and successful integration of acquired businesses and separation of underperforming or non-strategic assets or businesses. The company undertakes no duty to publicly revise or update any forward-looking statements as a result of future developments, or new information or otherwise, should circumstances change, except as otherwise required by securities and other applicable laws.


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