Valeant's talks to divest Salix unit to Takeda for about $10 billion end: report

According to people close to the situation, Valeant Pharmaceuticals' discussions to sell its Salix Pharmaceuticals unit to Takeda for around $10 billion have fallen apart due to disagreements over price, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday. The sources suggested that although the talks could potentially resume, Valeant is now focused on building the business. 

Sources recently revealed that Valeant had entered into advanced negotiations with Takeda regarding a possible sale of the Salix unit. People close to the matter said that Takeda was seeking to reduce the sum of the agreement. Meanwhile, shares in Valeant fell more than 7 percent on the news. 

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Valeant acquired Salix last year in a deal valued at about $11 billion. Meanwhile, Takeda has reportedly approached the Canadian drugmaker earlier this year regarding a potential acquisition of the entire company. 

Valeant has been under pressure by investors to reduce its debt load. CEO Joseph Papa previously indicated that the drugmaker could move to offload certain non-core assets to reduce debt, although he indicated Salix would not be among the units put up for sale. 

Earlier this week, Valeant announced that it would substantially expand its sales force to focus on potential primary care prescribers of Xifaxan (rifamixin) for irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhoea and Relistor (methylnaltrexone) for opioid-induced constipation. 

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