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Stada's €4.1bn takeover goes through

German pharma company finally comes under new ownership

Stada

After months of wrangling, German pharma company Stada has finally come under new ownership after a successful tender by private equity firms Bain and Cinven.

The buyout - which is the largest for a European-listed company for years - came after Stada and Cinven secured the acceptance of 63.85% of Stada's shareholders, just above the 63% needed under revised terms after an earlier attempt fell through.

Now that the minimum proportion of shares has been tendered, the deal goes into a two-week waiting period to give any shareholders who have not yet accepted the offer the opportunity to do so.

Now, Stada will batten down the hatches for the next two or three years while the new owners concentrate on getting the fundamentals of the generic and over-the-counter drugmaker right, recently-appointed chief executive Engelbert Coster Tjeenk Willink told journalists on a call yesterday. Willink took over the top job after former CEO Matthias Wiedenfels stepped down in July.

Stada has been linked with a possible offer for Sanofi's European generics business, which could be put up for sale later this year, but the new CEO would not comment further on that possibility in the aftermath of the takeover.

"We are pleased that the question of the future ownership structure has now been settled," said Willink. "Stada will now once again be able to fully concentrate on the operating business and to move forward with the successful growth strategy even more resolutely with the support of two strong partners."

The company's revised strategy will focus on improving efficiencies in its business - in particular reducing the cost of sales - and accelerating the launch of products in international markets. It also wants to push further into the biosimilars market and build up a portfolio of innovative, branded products.

Stada has been under pressure by activist investors for some time, amid claims that the company has under-performed compared to its peers in the market, holding back from the M&A that swept through the generic industry in the last few years, and needs to develop a new culture in order to succeed on the international stage.

Article by
Phil Taylor

22nd August 2017

From: Sales

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