July 5, 2018 / 12:48 PM / 3 months ago

Britain's Sinclair Pharma gets takeover interest from Chinese firms, shares soar

(Reuters) - Britain’s Sinclair Pharma (SPH.L) said on Thursday it had received a takeover approach from privately-owned China Grand Enterprises Inc. and its affiliate company Huadong Medicine Co (000963.SZ), sending its shares up by almost 30 percent.

However, the London-listed maker of skin lifting, collagen stimulation treatments and dermal fillers said discussions remained at a “very early stage” and there was no certainty an offer will be made, nor on the terms on which any offer might be made, Sinclair Pharma said in a statement.

China Grand Enterprises and Huadong Medicine have until Aug. 2 to make an offer or walk away under stock market rules.

The UK-based company with a market capitalization of 91.9 million pounds ($121.83 million) is engaged in the manufacture and distribution of dermatological products.

Earlier in the day Sinclair posted an 18 percent rise in half-year revenue in its core ex-U.S. business, driven by strong demand for its injectable collagen stimulator Sculptra, sales of which grew more than 50 percent in the first six months of 2018.

Sales of the company’s other products, including its best-selling Silhouette Soft skin tightening treatment, also grew.

“We remain very optimistic that we will see strong and broad based growth over the second half of 2018,” Chief Executive Chris Spooner said, when announcing the results.

Spooner added that momentum in its ex-U.S. business remained strong, leaving Sinclair well placed to deliver at least mid-teen growth at constant currencies for 2018.

Shares of the company were up 25.7 percent at 1337 GMT.

Reporting By Justin George Varghese in Bengaluru. Editing by Jane Merriman/David Evans

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