April 30, 2013 / 7:28 PM / 5 years ago

FEATURE-Deal maker Valeant reaches for biggest prize yet

* Actavis would take Valeant outside its area of expertise

* Shares of both companies on a tear this year

* Generic drug profits to grow

By Rod Nickel and Jessica Toonkel

WINNIPEG/NEW YORK, April 30 (Reuters) - After five years and some 60 deals that have turned Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc into a stock market darling with a market capitalization of $22 billion, Chief Executive Michael Pearson still has some surprises up his sleeve.

One was the Canadian drugmaker’s pursuit of U.S.-based generic pharmaceutical company Actavis Inc, a prize worth more than $13 billion that would be both Valeant’s biggest deal by far and a move into less familiar territory.

The deal stalled after the companies failed to agree on terms, people familiar with the situation said. An Actavis spokesman declined to comment and Valeant did not respond to inquiries. It was not clear if the deal could be revived.

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