Aventis Lists Candidates For Merger

Aventis, the Franco-German pharmaceuticals company, has drawn up a list of potential merger partners as part of its defence against Sanofi- Synthélabo which made a €48bn ($59bn) unsolicited takeover offer for Aventis last week. Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer were named as merger candidates by the executive board according to a participant of the board meeting last Wednesday. No talks have yet taken place with these companies and Aventis would prefer to remain independent, the source said.

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