Abbott, St. Jude’s $25B tie-up delayed by FTC request


Abbott ($ABT), which in April swooped in to acquire St. Jude Medical ($STJ) in a $25 billion deal, has to wait a little longer to claim its prize. Both companies have received a request from the Federal Trade Commission regarding the transaction.

Abbott reported in an 8-K filing Monday that both companies received a request for additional information from the FTC. This will extend the waiting period before the two can close the deal by 30 days, which will be tacked on after both companies comply with the request.

The acquisition came after Abbott denied rumors last year that it would acquire St. Jude. But the devicemaker reversed itself and stands to gain much from the deal. It is expected to close during the last quarter of this year, result in annual pretax synergies of $500 million by 2020 and become accretive to Abbott’s earnings in the first full year after its closing.

It will build out Abbott’s cardiac offerings, with St. Jude’s heart failure devices complementing Abbott’s stable of transcatheter mitral repair devices. The deal will also boost Abbott’s presence in the neuromodulation markets. The devicemaker has been seeking deals since it spun out AbbVie ($ABBV), which brought R&D-driven therapeutics with it, leaving Abbott with medical devices, diagnostics, nutrition and established pharmaceuticals.

Abbott is also pursuing an acquisition of diagnostics maker Alere ($ALR) for $5.8 billion, a transaction that critics are skeptical it can pull off if it also goes through with the St. Jude deal. In fact, credit rating agency Moody’s has threatened to downgrade Abbott’s rating if it moves forward with both acquisitions.

- here's Abbott's Form 8-K

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