Takeda clears cru­cial hur­dle as in­vestors back Shire deal

Irish Independent - Business Week - - FRONT PAGE - Takashi Umekawa

TAKEDA Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal has won share­holder ap­proval for its $59bn (€52bn) takeover of Shire, cre­at­ing a global pow­er­house that has a stronger drugs pipe­line but is also sad­dled with mas­sive debt.

Takeda will be join­ing the ranks of the world’s top 10 drug­mak­ers and gain­ing ex­per­tise in rare dis­eases through the deal, the big­gest over­seas ac­qui­si­tion by a Ja­panese com­pany.

It will also be­come one of the most in­debted. In ad­di­tion to is­su­ing new shares, the com­pany has se­cured $30.9bn (€27bn) in bank loans. The high debt lev­els were a sig­nif­i­cant con­cern for Takeda share­hold­ers who gath­ered at an ex­traor­di­nary meet­ing in Osaka, western Ja­pan, although al­most 90pc of them voted to ap­prove the deal as ex­pected.

“I want to keep my Takeda shares into the fu­ture, but now I am wor­ried about fur­ther de­clines in the share price,” said Satoshi Ito, a 75-year-old share­holder. He ab­stained from vot­ing.

Sep­a­rate meet­ings of Shire share­hold­ers later yes­ter­day also se­cured over­whelm­ing sup­port for the trans­ac­tion.

Takeda shares have fallen around 25pc since the drug­maker re­vealed its in­ter­est in the ac­qui­si­tion in March. They closed up 1pc at 4,240 yen yes­ter­day.

Shire shares gained 3.2pc to £46.95 on due to re­lief Takeda’s board had won its nine-month bat­tle to per­suade share­hold­ers of the mer­its of the tie-up.

Reuters

Shire power:A woman sits in the en­trance hall of Takeda Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal’s global HQ in Tokyo, Ja­pan – the com­pany’s takeover ofShire is the big­gest over­seas ac­qui­si­tion by a Ja­panese com­pany

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