(Adds background, companies response; updates share move)
Feb 12 (Reuters) - Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc has arranged financing for a potential bid for bowel-drug maker Salix Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
The acquisitive Canadian drugmaker will likely bid more than $150 per share for the company, Bloomberg said, quoting one of those people. (bloom.bg/16YHzmJ)
A bid of $150 per share would value Salix at about $9.6 billion. Salix's stock was up 4.6 percent at $149.82 in afternoon trading on the Nasdaq on Thursday.
Up to Wednesday's close, the company's stock had risen 7 pct since Feb. 3 when Bloomberg first reported that Valeant was weighing a bid for the company. (bloom.bg/1Da0N5B)
Salix, based in Raleigh, North Carolina, was not immediately available for comment. A Valeant spokeswoman said the company does not respond to market rumors or speculation.
Bloomberg, citing sources, reported earlier this month that British drugmaker Shire Plc was also interested in Salix. (bloom.bg/1Da0N5B)
Valeant, which lost a takeover contest for Allergan Inc last year, said earlier this week that it would buy bankrupt cancer vaccine maker Dendreon corp for about $400 million.
Valeant's U.S.-listed shares were up about 1.9 percent at $167.45 on the New York Stock Exchange. The company's Canadian shares were up about 0.6 percent at C$209. (Reporting by Natalie Grover; Editing by Ted Kerr)