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Horizon Pharma to buy Vidara Therapeutics in reverse merger

Staff writer |
Horizon Pharma, Inc. will acquire Vidara Therapeutics International Ltd. through a reverse merger for stock and cash valued at approximately $660 million. Horizon Pharma plc will be the name of the resulting company.

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Horizon Pharma plc will be organized under the laws of Ireland with a portfolio of four products marketed primarily in the United States. The proposed transaction has been unanimously approved by both companies' boards of directors.

Pursuant to the agreement, Vidara will combine with Horizon Pharma, Inc. with approximately 74 percent of Horizon Pharma plc's ordinary shares to be exchanged for Horizon Pharma, Inc.'s common shares, with Horizon surviving the merger. The shareholders of Vidara will retain approximately 26 percent of Horizon Pharma plc and receive $200 million in cash, subject to certain adjustments.

Vidara is a privately-held, profitable specialty pharmaceutical company with operations in Dublin, Ireland and the U.S. The company markets ACTIMMUNE, a bioengineered form of interferon gamma-1b, a protein that acts as a biologic response modifier, in the U.S. ACTIMMUNE is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in children and adults with chronic granulomatous disease (CGD) and severe, malignant osteopetrosis (SMO).

ACTIMMUNE is indicated for reducing the frequency and severity of serious infections associated with CGD and for delaying time to disease progression in patients with SMO. Vidara recorded net sales of ACTIMMUNE of $58.9 million in 2013.

In the proposed transaction, stockholders of Horizon Pharma, Inc. would own approximately 74 percent of Horizon Pharma plc and Vidara shareholders would own approximately 26 percent. Stockholders of Horizon Pharma, Inc. would receive one ordinary share of Horizon Pharma plc in exchange for each share of Horizon Pharma, Inc. common stock they own at closing.

The combined company is expected to have a capitalization of approximately 100 million basic and 122 million fully diluted shares. Horizon Pharma plc would be a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission reporting company, and its ordinary shares would trade on NASDAQ. The transaction will be taxable to the Horizon Pharma, Inc. U.S. stockholders.Horizon Pharma has secured a $250 million bridge loan commitment from Deerfield Management Company, L.P., pending execution of its final financing plans.

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