GSK again extends its $2.6 billion bid for HGS

GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) has again extended its $2.6 billion offer to buy its now estranged development partner Human Genome Sciences ($HGSI), giving shareholders until July 20 to offer up their shares.

The new date appears designed to put some pressure on shareholders, coming as it does just four days after the July 16 deadline set by Human Genome for final bids from any interested buyers. It doesn't leave much time to evaluate.

GSK says in a statement that the extension from its earlier June 29 deadline will allow shareholders to see what kind of other offers Human Genome might elicit. It says the three months since all of this back and forth began "is more than adequate time for the HGS board to bring it to completion."

Despite a variety of moves from both HGS and GSK, neither company has succeeded in getting the other to capitulate. GSK picked up less than 1% of HGS' shares during its initial tender offer period that began after the HGS board rejected GSK's $13 a share offer as too poor. HGS swallowed a poison pill, a plan that dilutes shares if any one buyer gets 15% of the company, making a takeover more expensive, but HGS can accept any bids it likes, even GSK's if it comes to that.

Some experts have said that because of the tight relationship the company has with GSK involving the lupus drug Benlysta and other shared products, it might be difficult for another buyer to get the full value out HGS.

- here's the announcement