NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Salix Pharmaceuticals (SLXP) are up 10.79% to $154.19 after it was reported that Allergan (AGN) approached the company and at least one other firm about a potential acquisition, as it seeks to fight off a $53 billion hostile takeover from Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) , sources told the Wall Street Journal.
It isn't clear where any talks with Salix stand, but one source said Allergan could strike a takeover deal with the company or another unknown party as early as next month.
Salix, which has a market value of $8.8 billion, is in the process of merging with a unit of an Italian company, Cosmo Pharmaceuticals. The approximate $2.6 billion deal would move the North Carolina company's domicile abroad -- one of a slew of recent so-called inversion deals aimed at least in part at lowering taxes, according to the Journal.
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If Allergan were to proceed with a takeover of Salix, it's not clear whether Allergan would also buy Cosmo, or whether such a deal would itself be an inversion, the Journal said.
Shares of Allergan are up 3.17% to $160.54.
TheStreet Ratings team rates SALIX PHARMACEUTICALS LTD as a Buy with a ratings score of B-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation: