Philip Morris International is poised to beat out private equity firm Carlyle Group to purchase Vectura Group.
Publicly traded Carlyle Group, a private equity holdings firm headquartered in Washington D.C., attempted to out-purchase PMI in a bid to win control over Vectura. However, Philip Morris International chief executive officer Jacek Olczak remains poised to reinvent the tobacco giant’s image to be a smoke-free product developer and holdings organization.
The Panel on Takeovers and Mergers based in the United Kingdom said that the fight for control of Vectura between PMI and Carlyle could enter into a very rare head-to-head auction, reports Axios and Bloomberg. With this new offer from PMI, shareholders in Vectura will get 165 pence ($2.29) per share in cash. This was up from PMI’s previous offer of 150 pence per share and Carlyle’s offer of 155 pence, issued a few days ago.
Now, PMI is expected to acquire Vectura. Vectura develops inhaled therapies for the treatment of respiratory diseases. The news of PMI’s win over Carlyle also comes on the news of PMI’s acquisition of inhaled drug specialist OtiTopic to expand the tobacco company’s assets and ventures away from combustible cigarettes and vaping products.
“The acquisition of OtiTopic is an exciting step in PMI’s Beyond Nicotine ambitions,” said Olczak, PMI’s chief executive, in a statement regarding the acquisition. “We have world-class expertise in the research, development, and commercialization of aerosolization and inhalable devices to help speed the delivery of this exciting product to market.”
The press release adds: “This acquisition is part of PMI’s strategic plan to leverage its expertise, scientific know-how, and capabilities in inhalation to grow a pipeline of inhaled therapeutics and respiratory drug delivery Beyond Nicotine…PMI has invested more than $8 billion in building a world-class research and development capability, including pre-clinical systems toxicology and clinical capabilities, behavioral research, and post-market studies. The company has also met the strictest of regulatory requirements, including in the U.S., where the Food and Drug Administration authorized a version of our lead smoke-free tobacco product as a Modified Risk Tobacco Product in 2020.”