Like 2009’s top ranker—Pfizer’s bid for Wyeth—Novartis made its play for eyecare company Alcon in January. Four days into the new year Novartis offered about $39.3 billion for the 75% of Alcon it didn’t already own; this makes it similar to another 2009 top ranker—partial-owner Roche taking full control of Genentech. Interestingly, Novartis’ deal for the initial 25% of Alcon was the second highest acquisition of 2008.
Novartis first managed to buy another 52% of Alcon, paying $28.1 billion, or $180 per share. The second part of the offer, valued at about $153 per share, was struck down. On December 15, 2010, Novartis finally bumped up its price to $168 per share, or $12.9 billion in total, for the remaining 23% of Alcon. For its third quarter financial results, which included 77% of Alcon, Alcon’s sales contributed $617 million to total third quarter sales. Core operating income for the first nine months, which excludes exceptional items and amortization of intangible assets, rose 32% to $10.8 billion, with Alcon contributing 3% points.