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Celesio Shareholder Opposes McKesson's $8.3B Offer

Wed, 12/11/2013 - 8:59am

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — McKesson Corp.'s $8.3 billion bid to buy rival pharmaceutical drug distributor Celesio AG is facing opposition from a major Celesio shareholder that contends the proposed sales price is too low.

The resistance of the hedge fund Elliott could be enough to scuttle the deal. Elliott owns a roughly 25 percent stake in the German company, and McKesson needs support from roughly three-fourths of Celesio's stockholders and bondholders. In statement Tuesday, Elliott vowed not to accept McKesson's current offer of 23 euros ($31.65) per share.

Elliott contends that Celesio is worth more than $8.3 billion to McKesson, based on much more money would be made once the two companies are melded together. The hedge fund didn't specify an acceptable sales price.

McKesson didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. The San Francisco company's offer is more than 30 percent above where Celesio's stock price stood in early October before reports surfaced about McKesson's interest in buying Celesio.

McKesson shares closed down nearly 2 percent, or $3.09, at $159.94.

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