Valeant moves on to new M&A targets

Now that Teva Pharmaceutical Industries has snatched Cephalon, what's next for would-be suitor Valeant Pharmaceuticals? More deals, naturally. After all, Valeant CEO Michael Pearson said from the get-go that Cephalon wasn't the only M&A prize in the pharma world. And Pearson has made quite clear that making deals is his answer to R&D.

"There's going to be more deals," Susquehanna Financial analyst Gary Nachman told Reuters. "The way [Pearson] came out so aggressively going after Cephalon was an eye-opener for people."

Valeant's stock dropped on the news that Teva had made a deal to buy Cephalon for $81.50 per share, $8.50 more than Valeant's $73 bid. But investors are already bidding up some pharma stocks in apparent expectation of another Valeant buyout offer. "If [Pearson sees] something in the $6 billion range, he's demonstrated he's willing to go that high," Nachman told the news service.

As Reuters reports, Forest Laboratories, Medicis Pharmaceuticals, Endo Pharmaceuticals, Jazz Pharmaceuticals and Salix Pharmaceuticals all gained several percentage points yesterday.

- read the Reuters news