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Sep 22, 2008

Sanofi-Aventis Ups Bid for Zentiva to $2.63B

  • Sanofi-Aventis has increased its all-cash offer for Zentiva to €1.8 billion, or $2.63 billion. Zentiva’s board says that it approves this new price of 1,150 koruny, or $70.14 per share.

    If the acquisition goes through, Zentiva would add a large portfolio of generic drugs including a version of Merck & Co.’s Zoloft. The firm will become a part of sanofi-aventis Europe, which already owns roughly 24.88% of Zentiva.

    Sanofi-Aventis’ increased bid represents a 9.5% raise from the initial price of 1,050 koruny, which was made in June and rejected. The enhanced proposal is a 25.5% premium over Zentiva’s closing price on April 30, the last trading day before the intention to make an offer for Zentiva was reported.

    Sanofi-Aventis Europe has received an irrevocable and unconditional undertaking from Jiri Michal, chairman and CEO of Zentiva, to tender his shares, representing approximately 3.4% of share capital and voting rights on an undiluted basis. Other members of Zentiva’s management have undertaken to tender their Zentiva shares representing an 2.3% of Zentiva’s share capital and voting rights on an undiluted basis.

    If Zentiva withdraws its recommendation of the improved offer, a break fee of €25 million, or $36.59 million will apply.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

Do you agree that ecstasy should be studied for its potential therapeutic benefits?

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