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Takeover target Shire promises strong growth

First Published      Last Updated Jun 23 2014 09:41 am

London • Takeover target Shire PLC is highlighting its potential as a standalone company, offering investors a rosy projection of its earnings potential that it believes is not reflected in either its share price or the takeover proposal made by U.S.-based drugmaker AbbVie.

Chief Executive Flemming Ornskov told analysts Monday that Shire should remain independent, and that it expects to more than double its 2013 annual product sales to $10 billion by 2020.

The company, which is known for its rare disease drugs, has rejected an unsolicited $46.2 billion offer from AbbVie Inc., arguing it fundamentally undervalues the company. Shire has rejected three overtures.

The offer comes at a time of intense speculation in the industry, as drugmakers look to grow or eliminate noncore assets while focusing on strengths.