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Shareholders OK Novartis-Alcon Deal

Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis says shareholders have given final approval for $51 billion takeover of U.S. eyecare company Alcon.

GENEVA (AP) -- Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis AG says its shareholders have given final approval for the takeover of U.S. eyecare company Alcon Inc.

Novartis said Friday that shareholders followed the board's recommendation to approve the last step of the $51 billion deal.

Alcon shareholders on Thursday also approved the sale.

Novartis chief executive Joseph Jimenez says the company expects its newly bolstered eye-care division to have annual revenues of $9 billion.

It previously said the takeover would also produce annual cost savings of $300 million.

Novartis shares were up 0.4 percent at 51.35 Swiss francs ($46.88) on the Zurich exchange Friday morning.

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