Fresenius Kabi terminates $4.3-billion merger agreement with Akorn

Fresenius Kabi announced Sunday that it has decided to abandon its planned takeover of Akorn, citing the latter's "failure to fulfill several closing conditions." The company noted that among other factors, it found "material breaches of FDA data integrity requirements relating to Akorn's operations." 

Earlier this year, Fresenius warned that the $4.3-billion merger agreement may be at risk pending the outcome of an independent investigation it had undertaken to look into possible data breaches relating to product development at the US drugmaker. According to Fresenius, it offered to delay its decision to give Akorn an "additional opportunity to complete its own investigation and present any information it wished [for us] to consider, but Akorn has declined that offer." 

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Akorn issued a response saying it "categorically" disagrees with Fresenius' allegations, adding that it intends to "enforce our rights, and Fresenius' obligations, under our binding merger agreement." The company argued that the ongoing probe, "which is not a condition to closing, has not found any facts that would result in a material adverse effect on Akorn's business and therefore there is no basis to terminate the transaction." When the merger agreement was announced in April 2017, Akorn said the companies had agreed to a termination fee of $129 million if the deal fell through. 

Meanwhile, Fresenius spokesman Matthias Link indicated that the German drugmaker will continue pursuing a stronger position in the US generics market through organic growth and acquisitions. Fresenius, which is scheduled to report first-quarter results on May 3, also confirmed the company's guidance for 2018, saying it expects sales growth of 5 percent to 8 percent in constant currencies, while net income is expected to increase by 6 percent to 9 percent. 

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