LONDON, July 8 U.S. drugmaker AbbVie
raised its offer for Shire to 51.15 pounds a share on
Tuesday, hoping to win over its reluctant target after an
earlier offer was rejected.
The London-listed hyperactivity and rare diseases specialist
said AbbVie's previous 46.26 pounds cash-and-stock proposal,
worth some $46 billion, had fundamentally undervalued the
AbbVie is eager to buy Shire both to reduce its tax bill by
moving its tax base to Britain - a tactic known as inversion -
and to diversify its drug portfolio. The U.S. company currently
gets nearly 60 percent of its revenue from rheumatoid arthritis
drug Humira, the world's top-selling medicine, which loses U.S.
patent protection in late 2016.
Chief Executive Richard Gonzalez has pressed the case for
his pursuit of Shire in a series of meetings with shareholders
on both sides of the Atlantic, after setting out the strategic
rationale for a deal on June 25.
(Reporting by Ben Hirschler; editing by Kate Holton)