Pfizer raises its ‘final’ bid for AstraZeneca to £69bn

Pfizer CEO Ian Read on Sunday described the company's new proposal for AstraZeneca as "compelling" and cautioned that the American drugmaker would walk away if AstraZeneca didn't accept it.

The U. S.-based drugmaker yesterday raised its bid for the British pharmaceuticals giant to 69.3 billion pounds (nearly $116.6bn) and claimed that a Pfizer-AstraZeneca merger would be in the best interests of all stakeholders. Previously, Pfizer had tabled an offer of 63 billion pounds (nearly $106bn) to acquire the British firm.

After raising bid for AstraZeneca, Mr. Read said, "We believe our proposal is compelling for AstraZeneca's shareholders and that a Pfizer-AstraZeneca combination is in the best interests of all stakeholders. We remain ready to engage in a meaningful dialogue but time for constructive engagement is running out."

He also urged AstraZeneca's shareholders to force it's the company's board to engage in meaningful discussions with Pfizer. AstraZeneca has so far refused to engage in discussions.

But, people familiar with developments at AstraZeneca said that the British firm would reject even the new, higher bid as the American firm's bid once again fell short of properly valuing the British firm.

Pfizer wants to acquire AstraZeneca with an intention to create a new pharmaceuticals entity that would likely be domiciled in the U. K. for tax purposes, while also enabling the American firm slash its research budget by as mush as seven million pounds.

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