Deal-happy Actavis eyes Spain's Almirall for European growth: Bloomberg

Actavis CEO Brent Saunders

Actavis ($ACT) has been on quite the buying spree lately--and it may not be over yet.

Just one month after announcing a $66 billion pact to buy Allergan ($AGN), the company is eyeing Spain's Almirall as a way to boost its European growth, according to Bloomberg. The Barcelona drugmaker, which could fetch about €3 billion ($3.7 billion) in a deal, is reportedly one of several possible takeover targets on Actavis' list.

With an Almirall deal would come products including Actikerall skin treatments and multiple sclerosis med Sativex, which would pad Actavis' branded revenue overseas. Earlier this week, the company announced it would rejig its commercial ops, dividing sales and marketing three ways among international brands, branded pharma and Allergan medical.

Almirall, which recently sold off its respiratory business to AstraZeneca ($AZN), may still decide to do some deals of its own, the news service notes--either before or instead of putting itself on the block. And the Gallardo family, which boasts a controlling stake in the company, may throw a wrench into Actavis' plans if they decide not to sell. Almirall Chairman Jorge Gallardo and First Vice Chairman Antonio Gallardo own about 67% of the company's stock, Bloomberg points out.

But if Actavis does land Almirall, it'll be the latest pickup in a series that has launched the Dublin drugmaker into the ranks of Big Pharma's biggest. Its Allergan buyout agreement followed recent buyouts of Forest Labs and Warner Chilcott, all of which should help put global sales in the realm of $23 billion next year.

Meanwhile, it'll be up to dealmaker and CEO Brent Saunders--who has gone from the top spot at Bausch + Lomb to Forest and onto Actavis all within just over a year--to lead the combined company. And with a revenue goal of at least 8% growth a year--a high mark for drugmakers Actavis' size, which usually manage top-line growth of a few percentage points a year--the young helmsman will have plenty on his plate.

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