Medicis Entertains Buyout from Valeant, Both Stocks Up in Premarket

Canadian drugmaker Valeant Pharmaceuticals (NYSE:VRX) has offered to purchase the entirety of Medicis Pharmaceuticals (NYSE:MRX) this morning for $2.6B, or $44 per share. On August 31st, before the holiday weekend, shares of MRX closed at $31.56, putting the purchase price at a 39% premium to last week’s close. Shares are trading around $43.50 ahead of the bell. Although MRX says the deal is not finalized, it should be completed sometime in the second half of the year pending shareholder approval. Some analysts are pointing out the possibility of a higher bid from another drugmaker, which could drive shares over Tuesday’s $44 bid price. VRX investors also consider the buyout a deal, driving today’s price up 10% before the bell.

Medicis focuses on dermatologic and aesthetic treatments and had $721M in revenue last year with over 60% of MRX’s revenue coming from acne-related product sales. Valeant also specializes in dermatological treatments, both prescription and over-the-counter, with some neurological drugs; revenue topped $2.5B in 2011.