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Abbott beats Nycomed and UCB in battle for Solvay’s drug unit

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Abbott Laboratories will buy Solvay’s pharmaceutical unit for €4.8bn ($7bn) according to reports released earlier today.

The deal, which is due to complete in 2010, will add $3bn worth of drugs to Abbott’s product portfolio, reducing its dependence on its co-developed arthritis drug Humira.

Abbott CEO Miles White told MarketWatch​ that: “The acquisition of Solvay Pharmaceuticals further diversifies our pharmaceutical portfolio, expands our presence in key high-growth emerging markets, enhances our investment in research and development and accelerates our long-term earnings-per-share growth outlook​."

The news, which broke in the last hour, is bad news for Swiss drugmaker Nycomed which had been considering raising its offer to €4.5bn​. Belgium’s UCB was also rumoured to be interested in Solvay’s unit.

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