Shire confirms in talks with AbbVie on takeover bid

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Shire Plc on Friday confirmed has held a with U.. drugmaker AbbVie Inc discuss AbbVie’ takeover bid for Dublin-based maker of drugs for rare diseases.

Shire, in a release, said would provide a further update “when appropriate.” added there can be certainty that any firm offer will be made nor as terms of any such offer.

, between Shire Executive Flemming Ornskov and AbbVie CEO Richard Gonzalez, took place in York, according a source familiar with the matter.

AbbVie, which is based in suburban Chicago and makes top-selling arthritis drug Humira and other medicines, has offered $51 billion for Shire, hoping the deal would cut its tax and diversify its product line.

But Shire has rejected three previous proposals AbbVie, saying they had fundamentally undervalued the .[eap_ad_2]

Some top investors in Shire have been urging to engage with AbbVie, after a prolonged silence the London-listed drugmaker.

Shire is a serial acquirer, having done six deals since Ornskov took the helm of Shire 14 months ago. It bought rare disease specialist Viropharma for $4.2 billion last November in its biggest deal yet – and Ornskov has said further “large” deals were possible.

Drugs for rare diseases are highly lucrative, often commanding prices of hundreds of thousands of dollars a year.

By moving into the field, AbbVie would make itself far less dependent on Humira, which accounts for almost 60 percent of AbbVie’ sales. (Reuters)[eap_ad_3]