February 13, 2009 / 2:51 PM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1- Zentiva says to issue new shares

 (Adds details, background)
 PRAGUE, Feb 13 (Reuters) - The board of Czech drugmaker Zentiva ZNTVsp.PR has decided to conditionally issue new shares ahead of an expected takeover by Sanofi-Aventis (SASY.PA), the company said on Friday.
 The company said it would issues 986,520 new shares valued at 0.01 euro each to cover employee stock options that have been conditionally exercised by Zentiva employees in anticipation of a change of the company’s main shareholder following the merger.
 The issue would raise the number of Zentiva shares by 2.5 percent to 39.12 million, according to Reuters calculations.
 Sanofi’s (SASY.PA) 1,150 crown per share takeover bid expires on Feb 20. The bid values Zentiva at 43.86 billion crowns ($1.98 billion).
 The subscription price for the new shares will be 1,150 crowns each, and all the new shares will be tendered into the Sanofi-Aventis offer, Zentiva said. 
 If the Sanofi offer, conditioned by gaining a majority of Zentiva shares, does not proceed to settlement, the new shares will not be issued, Zentiva said.
 Sanofi is Zentiva’s largest shareholder with 24.9 percent while Zentiva management, which backs the offer, controls 5.9 percent and has pledged to sell its shares as part of the bid.
 Another shareholder privately owned Belviport Trading Ltd will also likely sell its 10.06 percent stake in Zentiva [ID:nLC121915].   (Reporting by Jana Mlcochova; Editing by Michael Winfrey and Erica Billingham)         

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