Bloomberg News

Omnicare-PharMerica to Share Data on Antitrust Risk to Deal

October 26, 2011

(Updates with company comments in third paragraph)

Oct. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Omnicare Inc., the largest U.S. drug supplier to nursing homes, said it agreed to exchange information with PharMerica Corp., the rival that it’s seeking to buy in a hostile takeover.

Omnicare and PharMerica will share data related to the potential antitrust risk posed by the deal, PharMerica said today in a statement. PharMerica said its board still views Omnicare’s $15-a-share purchase offer as too low.

PharMerica “is engaging in this analytical process to enhance its understanding of the antitrust risk related to Omnicare’s proposed combination,” the Louisville, Kentucky- based company said in the statement.

Omnicare, based in Covington, Kentucky, offered to buy PharMerica for about $440.8 million in cash on Aug. 23. PharMerica’s management has opposed the acquisition, adopting a shareholder rights plan, or poison pill as it is commonly known, to block the deal.

Earlier this month, Omnicare said 47 percent of PharMerica’s shares had been tendered and it extended the offer until Dec. 2. The two companies combined would control as much as 60 percent of the market to distribute certain drugs to nursing homes, hospices and other elder-care facilities.

“There can be no assurance that this exchange of information will lead to discussions between the parties with respect to a definitive merger agreement or transaction,” Omnicare said in its own statement.

Andrew Brimmer, an Omnicare spokesman, said the company would have no comment beyond its statement. PharMerica didn’t immediately return calls for comment.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is advising Omnicare, while Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. is acting as financial adviser to PharMerica.

--With assistance from Jeran Wittenstein in San Francisco. Editors: Andrew Pollack, Stephen West

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Langreth in New York at rlangreth@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reg Gale at rgale5@bloomberg.net


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