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UCB and Schwarz Pharma continue drugmaker mergers


UCB and Schwarz Pharma continue drugmaker mergers


There has been more consolidation in the pharmaceutical sector. Belgian drugmaker UCB has offered 4.4 billion euros in cash and shares for Schwarz Pharma. The German company’s board has recommended shareholders accept the deal, which has the backing of the Schwarz-Schuette family which owns 60% of the stock.

The deal would bring together two mid-sized pharmaceutical firms to create one with more than 3.3 billion euros a year of revenue and with a research and development budget of 770 million euros. They believe synergies from combining their operations should lead to 300 million euros of savings annually after three years. UCB is offering 20% more than last Friday’s share closing price and said it believed that was fair.

Schwarz specialises in cardiovascular drugs, but also makes treatments for Parkinson’s Disease and epilepsy. This is the third deal involving a German pharmaceutical company in just days. Last week Merck announced it will buy a controlling stake in the Swiss firm Serono, Europe’s largest biotechnology company, for 10.6 billion euros. And Altana also said it would sell its drug business to Denmark’s Nycomed for 4.5 billion.

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