Market Overview

Report: Pfizer 'Unlikely' To Pursue Acquisition Of AstraZeneca


Due to British takeover rules and regulations, Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) is not permitted to present a fresh offer to acquire AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE: AZN) until November 26.

Reuters reported on Friday that after several unsuccessful attempts to take over British based AstraZeneca, Pfizer is now weighing its options and is considering less risky targets beyond AstraZeneca.

Reuters adds that according to sources, Pfizer has been working with bankers to explore its options, including a potential takeover over of Irish based Actavis plc (NYSE: ACT)

"The hurdles are now getting bigger and bigger,” a banker who met with AstraZeneca told Reuters. “A deal would take longer and would be more expensive. In that context, Actavis is becoming more attractive, although it would not be a great story.”

The banker believes that Pfizer's acquisition of Actavis would not generate similar synergies and opportunities in oncology when compared to a takeover of AstraZeneca.

Pfizer is still committed to acquiring a European based firm to lower its tax bill, despite tax-inversion deals becoming a “hot topic” in the United States.

A separate banker who is also familiar with Pfizer's strategy told Reuters that the company “never stopped looking at targets in Europe after the AstraZeneca debacle.”

Shares of AstraZeneca were trading lower by nearly 3 percent Friday morning while shares of Pfizer were virtually flat.

Posted-In: Actavis AstraZeneca Pfizer ReutersNews


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