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Sun Pharma In The News

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Sun Pharma Buys out Templeton in Taro

Pays Rs.364 crorefor the 12% stake, to reach 65%

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries has acquired the 12 per cent stake of Mark Mo-bius-headed Tem-pleton Asset Management in its Israeli subsidiary, Taro Pharmaceuticals, for $82 million (Rs.364 crore). Sun paid $ 16 per share, about 14 per cent premium to Taro's current market price of $13.75.
 
With this, Sun Pharma increased its Taro stake to 65.2 per cent from 53.2 per cent. Taro is a pink sheets-listed company on the New York Stock Exchange. The deal will help the Indian drug maker to get a crucial 77 per cent voting right on management de'cisions related to Taro.
 
A spokesperson at Sun Phar'ma confirmed the development and said the deal was concluded on November 4.
 
In September, Taro promoter Barrie Levitt and family had surrendered their shares to Sun Pharma to honour provisions of a failed merger agreement, after a three-year hostile legal battle. Promoter Barrie Levitt and family had a 12 per cent stake, but 41 per cent voting rights on management decisions. Sun acquired the stake from Barrie Levitt and family at $7.75 per share Taro, present in the US, Israel and Canada, has expertise in dermatology and pediatrics, along with specialty and gener'ic Pharmaceuticals, and over-the-counter products.
 
Three years ago, Templeton was among the first to oppose the deal with Sun Pharma, say'ing Sun's offer of $7.75 was in'adequate to protect the inter'ests of minority shareholders. Later, it changed its stand.
 
"We want to take a look at the audited financial statements and then take a decision on whether to tender the shares, or go with Sun management, or when to tender the shares and at what price - it's just a lot of options open to us," Templeton Executive Chairman Mark Mobius had said in September.
 
Templeton invested in Taro in 2005, and increased its stake in 2006, when Taro's shares were trading at $ 12. Templeton bought more shares in 2007 at between $6.50 and $7.20 per share, said a news report from Israel.
 
Taro's net profit for the September quarter zoomed 93.3 per cent to $18.9 million (Rs.83.7 crore), from $9.7 million (Rs. 42.9 crore) in the corresponding period last year, and net sales increased 10 per cent to $ 103.2 million (Rs.457.2 crore), from $ 93.9 million (Rs.416 crore) a year earlier, according to unaudited results.