Friday 17 August 2018

Dublin-headquartered Shire rejects €48bn takeover bid from Japanese rival

Takeda has ramped up its takeover ambitions under CEO Christophe Weber. Stock image / PA
Takeda has ramped up its takeover ambitions under CEO Christophe Weber. Stock image / PA

Drew Armstrong and Lisa Du

DUBLIN-Headquartered Shire has rejected a takeover offer of about €48.4bn from Takeda Pharmaceutical Co, the Japanese drugmaker has said.

Takeda made a cash and stock offer of £46.50 pounds (€53.49) a share in a bid intended to give Japan's biggest drugmaker a broader global reach. It is seeking new assets in gastrointestinal diseases and nervous-system ailments, and key treatments in the late stages of testing.

"Discussions between the parties regarding a potential offer are ongoing," Takeda said. "Takeda and its board reiterate that it will remain disciplined with respect to the terms of any such offer." The offer is a 51pc premium to Shire's closing price on March 27, the day before Takeda confirmed its interest. Shares of Massachusetts-based Shire surged as much as 12pc in London, where its listed.

"We think that Takeda's recently expressed interest in Shire may flush out other potential bidders, most likely among the US pharma heavyweights including Pfizer, Amgen and AbbVie," analysts at United First Partners said in a note.

Takeda's offer, made on April 12, comes amid a flurry of transactions in the pharmaceutical sector, marked by GlaxoSmithKline's $13bn agreement last month to buy out Novartis AG's stake in the two companies' consumer-health joint venture.

Just this week, Merck agreed to sell its over-the-counter unit to Procter &Gamble for $4.2bn, Sanofi said it would sell its European generic-drug business to Advent International and Shire agreed to sell its cancer unit to France's Servier for $2.4bn.

Takeda has ramped up its takeover ambitions under CEO Christophe Weber, as it seeks growth overseas amid patent expirations and a shrinking domestic population. (Bloomberg)

Irish Independent

Business Newsletter

Read the leading stories from the world of Business.

Also in Business