Novartis's open offer for Indian arm to begin on 14 May

Swiss drug maker Novartis AG's open offer for acquiring an additional 39 per cent stake in its Indian subsidiary, Novartis India Ltd, will begin on 14 May.

The offer is being made for an an additional 39 per cent stake in Novartis India, at a price of Rs351 per share, to be paid in cash, in accordance with the public announcement and subject to the SEBI takeover regulations. (See: Novartis makes open offer for 39 per cent in Indian arm)

The offer will start on 14 May and close on 3 June, Novartis India said in a regulatory filing.

Novartis AG, which holds a 50.9-per cent stake in the Indian subsidiary, is making the open offer to acquire up to 1,24,64,710 shares. Following the acquisition, Novartis AG would hold 2,87,42,147 shares representing 89.93 per cent in the Indian arm.

''The share purchase is being managed by DSP Merrill Lynch Ltd pursuant to the public announcement to the shareholders of Novartis India Ltd and in compliance with among others, Regulation 11(1) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Substantial Acquisition of Shares and Takeovers) Regulations, 1997 and subsequent amendments thereto,'' the release added.

The offer by Novartis AG is at a premium of 27 per cent to Novartis India's closing price of Rs275.6 on 24 March.

Since the announcement of the open offer by Novartis AG on 25 March, the scrip has been on an upswing, gaining over 29 per cent on the BSE. Shares of Novartis were trading at Rs358.80, up 0.84 per cent in the late afternoon trade on the BSE.