NEW YORK (AP) — Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. is making a hostile bid to acquire Ista Pharmaceuticals Inc. for $6.50 per share in cash, or $314 million — the Canadian company's latest attempt to buy the eye-disease drug developer.
The offer, announced Friday, is a 67 percent premium over Ista's closing stock price of $3.89 on Thursday.
Valeant first tried to make a deal with Ista in October, but said Ista refused to start the process. Valeant made an official written proposal to Ista's management in late November. On Dec. 2, Ista said it needed more time to review the offer. Valeant reaffirmed its offer on Monday, but Ista rejected it on Wednesday.
Valeant said it is giving Ista until the end of January to accept the deal. The company said it will consider paying more if Ista is willing to start discussions. Valeant focuses on neurology, dermatology and branded generic treatments.
In a statement, Ista, based in Irvine, Calif., called the existing offer "grossly inadequate and not in the best interests of Ista shareholders."
But it said that because Valeant has "attempted to revive" its rejected proposal, Ista's board will start a review of all its strategic options.
In morning trading, Ista shares soared 72 percent, or $2.81, to $6.70. Over the past year, the stock has traded between $2.88 and $11.39.
Valeant's U.S.-listed shares fell 18 cents to $44.68.