Bayer wins cancer firm Algeta with raised $2.9 billion bid

Thu Dec 19, 2013 5:27am EST
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FRANKFURT/OSLO (Reuters) - Bayer (BAYGn.DE: Quote) has won backing from the board of Algeta ALGETA.OL, its partner for a new prostate cancer treatment, for an increased $2.9 billion offer to buy the Norwegian company.

The cash deal would boost Bayer's drugs division by giving it outright control over Xofigo, a drug the two have developed jointly since 2009 and started selling in the United States this year.

The German drugs and chemicals group regards Xofigo as one of its five most important new drugs, a group that together has joint annual sales potential of 5.5 billion euros ($7.6 billion).

Bayer's sweetened bid at 362 Norwegian crowns per share represents a 37 percent premium to Algeta's closing price on November 25, the day before its initial offer became public.

Last year, healthcare deals carried an average 36 percent premium to the target's recent share price, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Bayer's increased bid is at a 48 percent premium to Algeta's three-month volume weighted average stock price on November 25.

Bayer initially offered $2.4 billion, or 336 crowns per share.

Algeta said on Thursday that its board unanimously recommended shareholders accept Bayer's sweetened offer.

A fund that is the company's largest shareholder and senior Algeta managers, together representing 14 percent of Algeta's share capital, planned to accept, Algeta said.   Continued...

The logo of Germany's largest drugmaker Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals is pictured on the front of its building in Berlin April 28, 2011. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch