Pfizer Approached Actavis For Possible Merger

Published: Sep 24, 2014

Pfizer Approached Actavis For Possible Merger

September 23, 2014

By Riley McDermid, BioSpace.com Breaking News Sr. Editor

Drug giant Pfizer Inc. has approached Actavis with a possible view towards acquiring the company, Bloomberg News reported Tuesday.

The companies aren’t in formal talks, said unnamed sources, with no offer on the table yet.

The news comes on a day rife with Wall Street downward pressure on biotech stocks, after U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew outlined new rules late Monday to dissuade domestic companies from so-called inversion, or using mergers and acquisitions as a way to move their headquarters to friendlier tax climates abroad.
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Pfizer was rebuffed in a similar effort last May in $114 billion bid for AstraZeneca PLC , which would have allowed it to move its tax domicile to the United Kingdom.

Parsippany, New Jersey-based Actavis would be an ideal inversion target for Pfizer because it snapped up its own Irish tax address last year when it acquired pharmaceutical Warner Chilcott Plc.

Traders liked the rumor news, pushing Actavis’s share price up 5.2 percent near close of trading Tuesday.

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