M&A

Shire says Takeda has come up with a new buyout offer as reports spotlight a looming handshake deal

Christophe Weber

Shares of Shire are on the march back north this morning following a report from Bloomberg that Takeda is within reach of a preliminary buyout deal, which could come as early as today. And that piece was followed by a statement from Shire confirming that Takeda revised its offer for the company today — marking its 5th pitch.

“The Board announces that it has received a revised proposal from Takeda regarding a possible offer for the Company on 24 April 2018,” Shire stated. “The Board is considering its position. There can be no certainty that any firm offer for the Company will be made nor as to the terms on which any firm offer might be made.”

Under UK M&A rules Takeda has until tomorrow at 5 pm London time to make a binding offer for the company.

Quoting sources familiar with the talks, Bloomberg reported that Takeda has again taken some of the weight off the new shares being offered and moving it over to cash to help make the package more appealing. If they can agree on the basic outline, Takeda can then come in and formalize an offer — provided no other bidders appear.

The last bid upped the ante to £47.00 per share, with £21.00 in cash (to be paid in dollars) and £26.00 in shares.

Flemming Ornskov

Shire stock jumped 5% as more investors bought into the idea that Takeda CEO Christophe Weber is determined to make this buyout happen.

Weber has been working to bring over analysts to his side, arguing that the buyout would vault Takeda into the industry’s top ranks, building its portfolio of marketed drugs and adding substantially to its pipeline. 

Neither company gets high marks alone. Takeda shares have wilted over the past year despite Weber’s move to buy Ariad and the top-to-bottom revamp of R&D that concentrated its efforts in Cambridge/Boston and Japan. Shire CEO Flemming Ornskov, meanwhile, has had to deal with harsh reviews of the Baxalta buyout, which left the company saddled with debt at a time its core franchises — particularly hemophilia — face stiff and growing competition.


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