Jazz Pharma basks in praise as it adds CNS drugs in Azur acquisition

Occasionally cited as a potential takeover target, Jazz Pharmaceuticals ($JAZZ) is in the news this morning with a takeover of its own. The biotech says it has struck an all-stock deal to acquire Dublin, Ireland-based Azur Pharma, adding new CNS drugs to its list of approved drugs.

Once the proposed deal goes through, the combined operation is expected to have $475 million in annual revenue. Jazz CEO Bruce Cozadd told analysts this morning that the developer--which ran into a regulatory rejection last year--has been pursuing a "strategic transaction" for some time now. Jazz currently gets most of its revenue from the narcolepsy drug Xyrem.

Azur also has operations in Philadelphia. The new company keeps the Irish incorporation--and the lower tax rate that offers--along with the Jazz operation in Palo Alto, CA. Azur's website lists pipeline projects for schizophrenia and prenatal supplements. Its portfolio includes CNS products like FazaClo and Prialt, along with women's health and urology products that include Elestrin, and an orphan disease product, Gastrocom.

Analysts like the looks of the deal. Jefferies' Corey Davis in particular praised the added $100 million in added revenue for Jazz, along with the tax-advantaged global profile.

"Our combined organizations would have a diverse portfolio of products and an international platform, paving the way for long term growth that builds on our current strengths," boasted Cozadd. "We look forward to working with our colleagues at Azur Pharma to join our two companies into one that is even stronger, creating value for our stockholders while serving more patients."

- read the Jazz release
- and the AP report on analysts' response
- here's the Bloomberg report