Bid raised to $15.8 billion in cash after rival offer from Irish firm

Valeant has flexed its acquisitive muscles to head off a rival bid for gastroenterology specialist Salix Pharmaceuticals, with which Valeant had already entered a merger agreement worth $14.5 billion (£9.4 billion).

Days after the initial deal was announced, Irish firm Endo Pharmaceuticals confirmed it had made a rival bid for Salix. Endo’s combined cash and shares offer was worth approximately $15.7 billion. However, Valeant swiftly renegotiated with Salix to raise its bid to $15.8 billion in cash, prompting Endo to withdraw its offer.

Valeant expects to be able to complete the transaction on 1 April.