Andrx Holders Approve Watson Deal

Generic-drug maker Andrx ( ADRX) says its shareholders have endorsed a $25-a-share buyout from rival Watson Pharmaceuticals ( WPI).

Shareholders of Andrx, based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., voted Wednesday on a deal that should be completed in the third quarter, the companies said. Watson is based in Corona, Calif.

The $1.9 billion cash transaction must be approved by the Federal Trade Commission, which has twice asked the companies for more information, most recently in early May. For the deal to close, "other various conditions" must be met. The companies didn't provide details.

Although a special Andrx shareholder meeting was scheduled for 10 a.m. EDT, the companies didn't announce the results until after the markets had closed. In regular trading, Andrx closed at $23.42, up 7 cents. After hours, the stock gained 3 cents. Watson's stock closed at $23.32, up 5 cents.

The Andrx-Watson deal represents another example of generic drug-industry consolidation. On Tuesday, Barr Pharmaceuticals ( BRL) signed an agreement to pay $2.2 billion for Pliva, a generic-drug company based in Zagreb, Croatia.

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