Like a potential bride who just can't find someone willing to settle down,
American Home Products
watched Sunday as its would-be partner
planned to merge instead with
Pfizer is expected to announce its acquisition of Warner-Lambert on Monday, pending approval from both boards, sources told
Sunday. According to
reports, the deal is valued at $91.4 billion including stock and assumed debt, and will create America's largest drug maker and the second-largest in the world.
American Home, which previously had failed to merge with
, has agreed to walk away from Warner-Lambert in exchange for $1.8 billion, sources told the
New York Times
over the weekend.
An American Home Products spokesman would not confirm the reports Sunday and declined to comment on the merger.
The breakup fee was specified in the company's initial agreement to merge with Warner-Lambert. Shortly after the two agreed to join in November, Pfizer upstaged American Home with an unsolicited counteroffer of $82 billion.
At first, Warner-Lambert refused to consider Pfizer's bid, but finally caved in last month.
Shares of Warner-Lambert closed Friday up 1 1/16, at 94 9/16, and Pfizer finished up 1/8, at 35 3/4. American Home fell 2 3/16 to finish at 45 1/2.
Representatives from Pfizer and Warner-Lambert could not be reached Sunday.
In Other News
borders could soon extend a lot father than its name indicates. The Internet service is in talks to buy out partner
50% stake in
, the London
reported Sunday. The negotiations were prompted by AOL's merger with
, which is a competitor of German media giant Bertelsmann, the newspaper said.
Separately, AOL Europe is poised to surpass
as the largest Internet service provider in the U.K. next month, AOL Europe chief exec Andreas Schmidt told the
Last week's record $181 billion merger of European telecom giants
will not jeopardize Vodafone's plans for a European Internet portal with France's
. At least that's according to Vivendi Chairman Jean-Marie Messier, who tells the
Journal du Dimanche
in Paris that he still expects the companies to launch their joint venture by the end of June.
In other M&A news ... Montreal-based
announced Sunday it had acquired
United Payors & United Providers
for $580 million. United Payors, based in Rockville, Md., processes claims between insurance companies and health care providers.
Days after a class-action lawsuit was filed in New York against
accusing the pair of fixing commissions, the
in London reported Sunday that the European Union is investigating the two auction houses. An EU spokesman told the newspaper the probe would focus on the European art market.
flight made an emergency landing Saturday night after developing problems with its rear stabilizer, the same piece of equipment that gave pilots trouble before last weekend's Alaska Airlines crash off the coast of California. Less than 10 minutes after takeoff, the plane safely returned to Reno/Tahoe International Airport with no injuries to any of its 140 passengers.
In Europe's ever-consolidating defense industry,
is considering a $2.07 billion bid for
Aerospace and Electronic Systems
reported. BAE is the company formed by
Thousands of miles away from the court battle over Web browsers,
is wading into a much more innocuous realm: online gambling.
has told the
that his company will provide the software if
wins his bid to run the U.K.'s National Lottery. Branson wants to reinvigorate the lottery with the help of the Internet, interactive television and mobile phones.
And finally, it's official:
has become the first First Lady to seek public office. She formally announced her candidacy for the U.S. Senate from New York Sunday.
In the Papers
For betting heavily on technology stocks,
1999 fund-family survey. Following it were
Morgan Stanley Dean Witter
Associates First Capital
, a Dallas-based finance company, could become a takeover target if its stock price continues to lag,
speculates. The magazine notes that its stock has taken a dive despite the company's strong performance.
American International Group
as potential buyers.
also features an interview with money managers Mark Bronzo and Daniel Portanova of
Groupama Asset Management
. Their stock picks include
Morgan Stanley Dean Witter
unnerved its competitors last month when it asked farmers not to sell it genetically modified corn for use in Doritos or Fritos chips, the
reported Sunday. The company, a unit of
, told the newspaper it has merely heeding its customers uncertainties. U.S. food producers as a whole have not buckled to concern over genetically modified crops, although America has not seen the consumer backlash that Europe has.
David Rheingold is a New York-based freelance writer. At the time of publication he was long Pfizer, although holdings can change at any time.