Bayer in talks with Algeta
Bayer AG, Germany’s largest drugmaker, is in “early stage” talks to acquire Norwegian partner Algeta ASA, whose prostate cancer medicine was approved for sale in the US in May, for about US$2.42 billion. Algeta received “a preliminary acquisition proposal” for 336 kroner (US$55.03) a share, the Oslo-based drugmaker said in a statement to the stock exchange yesterday. The offer values Algeta 27 percent higher than Monday’s closing price of 264.6 kroner. There is no guarantee Bayer’s proposal will result in a deal, Algeta said. Algeta shares rose as much as 30 percent. “We do not see the potential in the company justifying such a high takeover price,” DZ Bank AG analyst Peter Spengler wrote in a note to clients.
FAA to warn on ice
The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) says it will put out a bulletin this week to deal with the risk that ice could damage engines on some Boeing 747s and 787s. The FAA says the airworthiness directive will make sure pilots avoid icing conditions that could hurt engine power and possibly damage the engines. In certain conditions, ice crystals can form in the engines, reducing their power. The problem has come up with General Electric engines used on Boeing Co’s 747-8s and 787s. The US agency says it is an “interim” action, so more could be coming later. The directive will apply to 14 US planes, including Boeing 787s flown by United Airlines.
BlackBerry execs replaced
BlackBerry’s interim chief executive has shaken up the company’s management team in a move seen as a prelude to him taking the top job himself. BlackBerry chief operating officer Kristian Tear and chief marketing officer Frank Boulben, both hired by recently ousted chief executive Thorsten Heins, will leave the struggling smartphone maker. The company said on Monday that Brian Bidulka is being replaced by James Yersh as chief financial officer. Yersh previously served as senior vice president and controller. Former Sybase chief executive John Chen was brought in as the interim chief executive after negotiations to sell the Waterloo, Canada, company collapsed this month. Chen also serves as executive chair of the board.
Rupiah falls after debt sale
The rupiah dropped to the weakest level since March 2009 after Indonesia missed its fundraising target at a domestic US dollar debt sale amid concern the US Federal Reserve will bring forward a plan to cut stimulus. The government raised US$190 million yesterday by selling US dollar-denominated bonds to local investors, who submitted US$294 million of bids, short of the US$450 million goal, said Robert Pakpahan, director-general of the debt management office. Global funds sold US$361 million more of local stocks than they bought this month through yesterday as the minutes of a Fed meeting last month showed the central bank may reduce its monthly bond purchases in the “coming months.” “We expect to see the rupiah weakening, keeping in view the Fed-tapering risk,” Singapore-based Commonwealth Bank of Australia currency strategist Andy Ji said. “There’s been damage to confidence recently, so the government may look to do another sale of the bonds when conditions stabilize.”