Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE): May Raise Bid for AstraZeneca

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Dallas, Texas 05/013/2014 (FINANCIALSTRENDS) –Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) is planning to increase its buyout bid for a British rival AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN), Bloomberg reported yesterday, citing sources familiar with the matter. The new offer is believed to increase the value moderately above the current $84.36 or GBP 50 per share level, along with increasing the cash portion, reported Bloomberg. Recently, during the start of this month, AstraZeneca turned down Pfizer’s cash and stock offer which valued its British rival at $106 billion or GBP 62.6 billion.

A Hostile Takeover:

Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) is once again planning, in consultation with its advisers, to raise its bid as the company favors a friendly deal given the ongoing political scrutiny both in the U.S. as well as in U.K. However, it may consider making a hostile buyout attempt by taking the proposal directly to a British rival AstraZeneca’s shareholders.

Earlier this month, British lawmakers also mobilized against Pfizer’s proposal to takeover AstraZeneca and demanded assurances on research investment and jobs in Britain.

Job Guarantees:

Chief Executive Officers of both the companies are expected to testify this week at parliamentary committees given the U.K. government’s pressure to have certain guarantees from Pfizer to continue medical research and jobs in Britain following the takeover of AstraZeneca.

However, Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE)’s CEO, Ian Read made it clear to the governors of Delaware and Maryland  that at this juncture, it will be too early to determine the impact of takeover on AstraZeneca’s jobs and manufacturing in both the states. Earlier the governors of both these states raised concern over the jobs in their states and wrote a letter to Pfizer seeking the company’s viewpoint.

Stock Update:

Yesterday, the stock of Pfizer closed at $29.13, gaining 0.34% from its previous close. The stock has delivered over 5% negative returns year to date and is trading approximately 2.70% below its 200 day simple moving average.

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