* Acquisition would give Shire rights to Resolor in EU
* Purchase to be financed from existing cash resources
* Gets unconditional OK from 39 pct of Movetis shareholders
* Shire up 1.58 pct, outperforming sector
* Movetis suspended at 11.90 euros
(Adds analyst comment, shares, banks, owners, background)
By Julie Crust
LONDON, Aug 3 British drugmaker Shire Plc
(SHP.L) plans to buy Belgium's Movetis NV MOVET.BR for 428
million euros ($559 million) in cash to boost its portfolio of
gastrointestinal products and drive international growth.
The acquisition would give Shire the rights to Resolor,
which treats chronic constipation in women, in 27 countries of
the European Union and elsewhere. Shire estimates potential
annual peak sales of Resolor of more than 300 million euros.
Buying Movetis fits Shire's long-standing strategy of
building its business through acquisitions of firms selling
specialist drugs. News of the latest bolt-on deal was cheered by
investors, with Shire shares rising 1.58 percent by 1428 GMT.
The DJ Stoxx European healthcare index .SXDP was up 0.41
Chief Executive Angus Russell said this year that Shire
would continue to hunt out promising deals to drive the
company's growth beyond 2015.
The venture-capital firms backing Movetis -- Sofinnova
Partners, sister firm Sofinnova Ventures, and Life Sciences
Partners -- support the bid, and in total institutional
shareholders owning 38.9 percent have agreed to accept the
offer, Movetis said.
Shire said it is offering 19 euros for each share in
Movetis, which had 100 million euros in cash on its books at the
end of March.
The offer price represents a 74 percent premium to Movetis's
closing share price on Monday at 10.90 euros and is 55 percent
above the price of 12.25 euros at which the company floated on
Euronext Brussels last December.
Movetis and its main shareholders had earlier sought a buyer
before opting for the flotation, a person familiar with the
Movetis shares were suspended just before the announcement,
last trading at 11.90 euros.
Peter Welford, an analyst at Jefferies, said the deal was
positive, although he was less confident in Resolor's sales
"We agree the acquisition should be earnings accretive after
2012 but are more cautious on Resolor's EU commercial potential,
with a $300 million preliminary peak sales estimate versus
Shire's over $400 million peak," he said.
The enterprise valuation price of 328 million euros for
Movetis will wipe out two-thirds of Shire's cash, as at March
31, but the company's strong cash inflows in the second and
third quarters should largely replenish this, Welford added.
STICKING TO 2010 GUIDANCE
The British drugmaker, which will report second-quarter
results on Wednesday, said its business continued to perform
"Given this strong performance there is no impact to
previously stated guidance for 2010 due to the modest short-term
financial effect of the acquisition of Movetis," it said.
Shire has a fast-growing drug in Lialda for ulcerative
colitis, which had sales of $236 million in 2009 and is expected
to bring in around $500 million by 2014, according to consensus
Analysts said it should be able to accelerate the roll-out
of Resolor by using its existing sales force currently promoting
Lialda and another bowel drug, Pentasa.
Movetis is entitled to receive royalties on sales of Resolor
outside of Europe from Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N), the U.S.
healthcare group from which Movetis is a spin-off.
Further off, Movetis also has two drug candidates in Phase
II clinical trials for ascites, or fluid build-up in the
abdomen, and heartburn.
Deutsche Bank advised Shire, while Evercore advised Movetis.
(Additional reporting by Ben Hirschler, Quentin Webb and Philip
Blenkinsop; Editing by Sharon Lindores)