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DBL%20Hendrix%20small.png College chemistry, 1983

Derek Lowe The 2002 Model

Dbl%20new%20portrait%20B%26W.png After 10 years of blogging. . .

Derek Lowe, an Arkansan by birth, got his BA from Hendrix College and his PhD in organic chemistry from Duke before spending time in Germany on a Humboldt Fellowship on his post-doc. He's worked for several major pharmaceutical companies since 1989 on drug discovery projects against schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, diabetes, osteoporosis and other diseases. To contact Derek email him directly: Twitter: Dereklowe

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January 5, 2010

Always Read the Fine Print

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Posted by Derek

. . .especially when you're dealing with the Swiss. You'll have probably seen that Novartis is buying Alcon. But what price they're buying them at depends on who you are.

As the Wall Street Journal reports, Novartis, who already had 25% of Alcon's stock, is paying majority shareholder Nestlé $180/share for their 52% stake in the company. Minority shareholders - that is, all the rest of them - are being offered $153. Some of these folks have paid up over $160/share recently, anticipating such a deal, but under Swiss law, there's not a thing that they can do about it. . .

Comments (6) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Business and Markets


1. TexMex on January 5, 2010 2:53 PM writes...

I wondered if anyone knows how many people will be let go as a result of this. How much of the research will be outsourced? Any Rumours?

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2. Sili on January 5, 2010 3:12 PM writes...

Is this just a matter of Swiss law? What makes this deal illegal elsewhere?

Aren't we all free to buy and sell what we want/have at our own price?

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3. Palo on January 5, 2010 3:55 PM writes...

Paying a premium for majority control of Alcon makes sense. And with that acquisition Novartis has more than 75% of the company... why would they offer the other shareholders more than the stock was valued at a month ago? (And why do we need to start mistrusting the swiss?)

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4. Lucifer on January 6, 2010 1:33 AM writes...

Ok.. here is my much-delayed blog. Any suggestions on topics and directions are welcome.

I already have a popular and much more politically incorrect blog + science is more than skewering imbeciles. Therefore I will post once or twice a week, instead of everyday like at my other blog.

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5. Hap on January 6, 2010 10:14 AM writes...

You can offer me $153 for my stock, but in most places I can tell you where (in which orifice) to place your offer. Are the minority stockholders required to sell, because if not, I'm pretty sure I know how much of my stock they'd be getting at that price (well, if I actually had any). The only other question would be whether you think the company will get worse, in which case, $153 is better than $90, or $0.

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6. canuck on January 8, 2010 2:47 PM writes...

this explains it some more....

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