Shire Sees Baxalta Deal Closing as Expected After New Rules

  • Transaction expected to complete by mid-2016 as plannned
  • New Treasury rules had thwarted Pfizer-Allergan deal

Shire Plc expects to close its $32 billion deal to acquire Baxalta Inc. in mid-2016 as expected, after new rules from the U.S. Treasury thwarted the $160 billion merger of Pfizer Inc. and Allergan Plc.

The Baxalta transaction will proceed as announced on Jan. 11, Shire said in a statement Wednesday.

Shire has said the proposed purchase of Illinois-based Baxalta isn’t an inversion -- a practice where a U.S. company adopts a foreign tax address through an acquisition, which the new rules are designed to discourage. The rationale of the transaction is to create a leader in treatments for rare diseases, according to Shire, which has a Dublin legal address but keeps many operations elsewhere.

The statement pushed Baxalta shares as high as $41.59 in New York trading and they were up 6.7 percent to $41.01 as of 2:57 p.m. Shire shares in London closed up 5.2 percent. Both stocks had dropped on Tuesday, following the announcement of the tougher Treasury rules on corporate inversions late Monday.

Shire won over Baxalta by adding cash to sweeten its bid in January.

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