Botox Maker Allergan Sold to AbbVie for $63B

AbbVie faces pressure to diversify its portfolio as Humira, the world’s best-selling drug, faces increased competition from cheaper versions in Eur...
Botox Maker Allergan Sold to AbbVie for $63B

Pharmaceutical company AbbVie has reached an agreement to buy Allergan, the maker of Botox, in a cash and stock transaction.

Under the terms of the deal, Allergan shareholders would receive 0.8660 AbbVie shares and $120.30 in cash for each share that they hold, a 45% premium to the stock’s closing price on June 24, 2019.

The companies said the transaction has an equity value of approximately $63 billion.

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The deal comes as AbbVie has faced pressure to diversify away from its reliance on arthritis treatment Humira, the best-selling drug in the world, which faces increased competition from cheaper versions in Europe. AbbVie loses its exclusivity rights to the drug in 2023.

Shares of the company have lost more than a third since their high in January 2018.

Humira saw its first drop in quarterly sales in March.

Shares of Allergan have lost about half of their value since Pfizer dropped a proposed $160 billion merger in April 2016. Activist investor David Tepper urged Allergan to hire an independent chairman or explore a merger or sale.

Under the announced deal Richard Gonzalez will continue as chairman and chief executive officer of AbbVie, which will still have its principal executive offices in Chicago.

Allergan chairman and chief executive officer, Brent Saunders, and one other Allergan board member will join AbbVie’s board.

In a note, Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Louise Chen said the deal was better than expected for Allergan.

Maxim Jacobs, director of research for North America at Edison Investment Research, said the deal would help AbbVie diversify and gave Allergan, “a decent premium to what has been an outrageously low stock price.”

AbbVie’s lead financial adviser was Morgan Stanley. Allergan’s exclusive financial advisor was J.P. Morgan Securities

The companies said they anticipate closing of the transaction by early 2020.

Allergan shares were up 26% in afternoon trading.

AbbVie shares, though, were down 15%. One analyst called the deal “a major bailout for Allergan shareholders that before today were hoping for a split as a salvaging event.”

Standard & Poor said it expects to lower its ratings on AbbVie to ‘BBB+’ from “A-” following the transaction’s close.