Reports from France today indicate that Sanofi CEO Chris Viehbacher sent Genzyme CEO Henri Termeer a letter indicating Sanofi's continued interest in buying Genzyme. Viehbacher continues to push for meetings for limited due diligence with regard to Genzyme's remedial manufacturing actions and a review of Campath's commercial prospects. Both are necessary moves for Sanofi to feel confident in upping its $69 per share bid to something closer to Vermeer's liking - last stated as $89 per share given bullish Genzyme forecasts for Campath.
In more ominous tones, Viehbacher stated to Termeer that if Genzyme did not want to negotiate that it should bring the matter to a vote before its shareholders. He also said Genzyme should refrain from enacting anti-takeover manuevers (poison pills) like lengthening and staggering the terms of its directors thus preventing a proxy fight at their next shareholders meeting in May 2011. Let the shareholders vote seems to be the thrust of the message. See WSJ and Fierce Biotech.
PharmaGossip also reports that Genzyme has begun to reduce headcount in accordance with its previously announced plan to reduce staff by 1000 as a cost cutting measure. The company announced 392 cuts from its worldwide staff of more than 12,000 on Friday. The cost cutting move will cause Genzyme to take 4th Qtr charges of between $24 and $27 M.
Posted by Bruce Lehr November 8th 2010.