Actavis Plans Name Change To Allergan

Drugmaker Actavis plans a name change once it finishes its acquisition of Botox-maker Allergan in a $66 billion deal that the company announced last fall.

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Drugmaker Actavis plans a name change once it finishes its acquisition of Botox-maker Allergan in a $66 billion deal that the company announced last fall.

Actavis said Wednesday that it will adopt the Allergan corporate name after securing Actavis shareholders' approval for the switch at its annual meeting later this year.

Ireland-based Actavis outbid Canadian drugmaker Valeant Pharmaceuticals with an offer of about $219 in cash and stock for each Allergan share. The company said in November that it expected to close the deal in this year's second quarter.

Actavis said it will use its new corporate name for its global portfolio of branded drugs but will keep Actavis for certain geographic regions and products.

Actavis CEO Brent Saunders said in a statement from the company that the change will help ensure "that our corporate identity reflects the dramatic evolution of our company within the pharmaceutical industry."

The drugmaker has grown rapidly through several acquisitions over the past few years. It completed a $28 billion purchase of Forest Laboratories last year. Before that, the drugmaker spent $8.5 billion on Warner Chilcott and moved its headquarters to Ireland from New Jersey after merging with Watson Pharmaceuticals.

Actavis told analysts Wednesday at its annual investor meeting in New York that it sees opportunities for growth in key specialties like women's health and the center nervous system. It has nine potential treatments in mid- or late-stage clinical development.

Those are usually the final two stages of a drug's development before regulators review the compound for possible marketing approval.

The drugmaker also reported on Wednesday fourth-quarter adjusted earnings of $3.91 per share and revenue of $4.06 billion, both of which topped Wall Street forecasts.

U.S.-traded shares of Actavis PLC were up $4.14, or 1.4 percent, to $291.04 in premarket trading about an hour before market open Wednesday. The stock has already climbed more than 11 percent so far this year, as of Tuesday's market close.

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