News in brief

Sanofi goes public on $18.5bn bid for “unwilling” Genzyme

Sanofi Aventis has gone public with its $18.5bn (€14.5bn) takeover bid for US biotech Genzyme, putting more pressure on firm’s “unwilling” board

In a letter published on the French drugmaker’s website, CEO Chris Viebacher said Sanofi decided to address Genzyme shareholders directly after the Massachusetts firm repeatedly rejected the takeover offer it made on July 29.

The announcement follows months of speculation about a bid and weeks of rumours that talks had stalled after a disagreement on price. In fact, according to Viebacher’s letter, the only meeting between the firms’ saw Genzyme reiterate its rejection.

He said that Sanofi wants to buy Genzyme to provide it with a "centre of excellence" in the Boston area to work with its existing regional vaccine and oncology research units, stressing his firm's commitment to making the acquisition happen.

So, while Viebacher told Genzyme CEO Henri Termeer and a number of media organisations that Sanofi’s preference is to “work with” Genzyme on a “mutually agreeable transaction,” a hostile battle seems more likely unless the US firm radically changes its position.

Related News

Genzyme sells genetics lab; amid talk of staff cuts

Sanofi launches hostile Genzyme bid; Pfizer close on Uplyso Brazil deal

Genzyme rejects Sanofi’s $18.5bn bid; IPT looks at biotech’s turbulent 18-months

Genzyme values itself at $22.7bn, $20 per share higher than Sanofi bid

Genzyme transfers fill/finish to meet 1st decree deadline

Genzyme lowers guidance after Fabrazyme production delay

Genzyme given US thumbs up to manufacture Thymoglobulin in France

Genzyme given US thumbs up to manufacture Thymoglobulin in France

EU majors reported to be looking at Genzyme

Genzyme inks expanded fill & finish deal with Hospira

Sanofi said to be planning $20bn acquisition in US

$175m fine for Genzyme after Allston troubles

Genzyme addresses impurity problem at Ireland Cerezyme plant