The FINANCIAL — Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) and Omrix Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: OMRI), a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company that develops and markets biosurgical and immunotherapy products, on November 24 announced a definitive agreement whereby Omrix will be acquired for approximately $438 million in a cash tender offer.
Omrix is expected to operate as a stand-alone entity reporting through ETHICON, Inc., a Johnson & Johnson company and leading provider of suture, mesh, hemostats and other products for a wide range of surgical procedures.
According to Johnson & Johnson, the acquisition of Omrix would provide ETHICON with an opportunity to strengthen its presence in active, biologic-based hemostats and convergent products for various surgical applications. ETHICON currently has exclusive distribution rights in the U.S. and the European Union for EVITHROM™ Thrombin Topical (Human) and EVICEL™ Fibrin Sealant (Human), two active, biologic-based hemostats manufactured by Omrix. ETHICON and Omrix are also partnering on a Fibrin Pad product candidate, currently in Phase II clinical trials, as an adjunct to control mild to moderate soft tissue bleeding.
Under the terms of the agreement, Johnson & Johnson will commence a tender offer to purchase all outstanding shares of Omrix at $25.00 per share, which is expected to close by the end of December 2008. The tender offer is conditioned on the tender of a majority of the outstanding shares of Omrix’s common stock on a fully diluted basis. The closing is conditioned on Israeli antitrust clearance and other customary closing conditions. The $358 million estimated net value of the transaction is based on Omrix’s 17.5 million fully diluted shares outstanding, net of estimated cash on hand at time of closing. The boards of directors of Johnson & Johnson and Omrix have approved the transaction. In addition, Robert Taub, Omrix’s Founder and Chief Executive Officer, and entities controlled by Robert Taub, have agreed to tender approximately 16% of Omrix’s outstanding shares in the tender offer.
Alex Gorsky, Company Group Chairman for Johnson & Johnson with responsibility for the ETHICON business worldwide, said, "Our partnership with Omrix has already expanded our capacity to provide innovative, next generation products that raise the standard of surgical care. We believe this transaction will further enhance our efforts to bring new, science-based products to patients and the healthcare professionals who treat them.”
“We are delighted to announce this transaction, which combines Omrix’s expertise in developing innovative biological products with ETHICON’s commercialization expertise and global reach. We believe this merger is in the best interest of Omrix’s shareholders, customers and employees,” commented Robert Taub. “Omrix and ETHICON have enjoyed a solid partnership for the past five years. As a formally unified entity, our successful distribution and development agreements will evolve into an even more attractive long-term growth strategy. Omrix’s Israeli-based manufacturing and research & development expertise will be strengthened by the long-term stability and integration that this merger will create.”
Assuming this transaction closes in 2008, Johnson & Johnson is expected to incur an estimated one-time, after-tax charge of approximately $120 million reflecting the write-off of in-process research and development charges (IPR&D). The acquisition is expected to be breakeven to slightly dilutive to Johnson & Johnson's earnings per share in 2009.