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Salix Pharmaceutical's Inversion Deal Makes It Unlikely Merger Target, Dilutes EPS

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Salix Pharmaceutical's (NASDAQ: SLXP) $2.7 billion inversion deal disappointed investors Wednesday who complain it dilutes near-term earnings and makes Salix seem like an unlikely merger candidate any time soon.

Salix said after the bell Tuesday it will acquire the Irish unit of Italy's Cosmo Pharmaceuticals and cut its tax rate by a third in a headquarters move offshore.

"The bad news is that the acquisition is dilutive" to 2015 earnings and "only modestly accretive" in the subsequent two years, UBS' Mark Goodman said in a note.

"Investors will be disappointed with the dilution and that Salix is less likely to be an acquisition candidate," Goodman said, maintaining a Neutral rating and $123 target.

JMP's Oren G. Livnat likewise said the deal "may disappoint investors because it lacks the immediate accretion the market has come to expect" from such transactions.

Livnat also saw the move suggesting Salix "is not a near-term seller" although he added that "as an Irish company it will likely remain a target."

Livnat retained an Outperform rating on Salix, but put his target under review.

Salix shares slipped Wednesday, closing at $133.29, down 2.9 percent.

Latest Ratings for SLXP

Mar 2015JefferiesDowngradesBuyHold
Feb 2015UBSDowngradesBuyNeutral
Feb 2015Cantor FitzgeraldDowngradesBuyHold

View More Analyst Ratings for SLXP
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Posted-In: JMP Mark Goodman Oren G. Livnat UBSAnalyst Color News Reiteration Analyst Ratings


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