Onyx, Alexion add spice

M&A news for Onyx, Alexion will keep Wall Street focused on biotech

Buysiders say a takeout of Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc. is inevitable even after the company rejected an unsolicited bid from Amgen Inc. late last month. They believe the final price could come at a hefty premium relative to recent mega-deals as there are likely to be multiple bidders interested in Onyx's profit-generating oncology portfolio.

With last week's reports that Roche is now targeting Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc., some buysiders also think the M&A chatter can only provide more legs for biotech's bull run on Wall Street (see BioCentury This Week television, July 14).

Rumors of Amgen's bid for Onyx began on Friday, June 28. After jumping almost 25% in after-hours trading that day, Onyx issued a press release over the weekend acknowledging that its board had rejected Amgen's $120 per share offer as inadequate but had authorized financial advisor Centerview Partners LLC to contact potential acquirers.

Amgen's bid valued Onyx at $8.7 billion ($10 billion fully diluted) and represented a 38% premium to Onyx's close on June 28.

Investors reacted by sending Onyx shares up $44.51 (51%) to

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