Swiss drug maker Roche Holding AG yesterday said that it will not extend its $6.7-billion bid for Illumina Inc beyond 20 April after the US-based gene sequencing company shareholders blocked its move to appoint new directors.
The announcement practically ended its three-month long pursuit of Illumina, which holds a 60-per cent share in the next-generation sequencing market.
But surprisingly after raising its initial January offer from $44.50 a share to $51 a share or from $5.7-billion to $6.7 billion late last month, the Basel, Switzerland-based company said that an offer above $51 per share would not be in the interests of its own shareholders.
"We continue to hold Illumina and its management in very high regard but, with access only to public information about Illumina's business and prospects, we do not believe that a price above Roche's offer for Illumina of $51 per share would be in the interest of Roche's shareholders," said Severin Schwan, CEO of Roche.
"Roche will continue to consider options and opportunities to develop further its portfolio of businesses in order to expand its diagnostics leadership position," he added.
In the past, Roche had patiently played the waiting game during a hostile acquisition, and this is one of the rare occasions that it has opted to walk away after waging a prolonged battle to acquire Ventana Medical Systems and Genentech Inc in the recent past.