Shares of Amylin Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:AMLN) rose as much as 51 percent on Wednesday after Bloomberg News reported the company rejected a $3.5 billion unsolicited takeover bid from Bristol-Myers Squibb Co (NYSE:BMY).
Bristol-Myers proposed an acquisition at $22 a share in a letter to Amylin, which the board turned down last month, according to Bloomberg, which cited two people with knowledge of the matter.
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Bloomberg said Bristol-Myers has not approached Amylin, which makes the diabetes drugs Byetta and Bydureon, since the rejection. A Bristol-Myers spokeswoman said the company "does not comment on market rumors or speculation." A spokeswoman for Amylin was not immediately available for comment.
Amylin has been considered a possible takeover target for some time, with at least one analyst recently speculating AstraZeneca Plc <AZN.L> might be a possible interested buyer. Tim Anderson an analyst at Sanford Bernstein said recently he believed an Amylin acquisition would fit well and work financially assuming AstraZeneca paid a 30 percent premium, which would have valued Amylin at $4.5 billion.
The diabetes sector is one of the fastest-growing in the drug industry due to rising rates of obesity. More than 300 million people worldwide suffer from diabetes, including nearly 26 million Americans. They run a high risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, blindness and limb loss. Amylin's shares were up 45 percent to $22.27 in mid-morning trading on Nasdaq. Earlier in the session they rose to a year-high $23.26.