Reed Smith and Lindahl among firms advising on Meda’s £1.8bn acquisition of Rottapharm

Reed Smith has advised alongside a raft of European firms on Swedish pharmaceuticals company Meda’s acquisition of its Italian rival Rottapharm for £1.8bn.

The transaction followed a cancelled IPO by Rottapharm, which failed to achieve the valuation sought by its owner, the Rovati family. 

Reed Smith advised longstanding client Meda on the transaction, led by life sciences partners John Wilkinson and Nicola Maguire. The firm was assisted by Gianni Origoni Grippo Cappelli & Partners, which advised on Italian aspects. Meanwhile, Lindahl advised on Swedish law. 

Italian firm Pavesi Gitti Verzoni advised Rottapharm on its sale, led by partner Carlo Pavesi. 

Background to this deal: 

Reed Smith has a close relationship with Meda, having first advised the Swedish company on its $392m acquisition of US giant Valeant’s pharmaceutical business in Europe in 2008. Sullivan & Cromwell took the key role for Valeant on that transaction. 

The deal is the latest in a wave of global pharmaceuticals and healthcare consolidation transactions to shake the sector this year. Others include Shire Pharmaeuticals’ £32bn acquisition by AbbVie (10 July 2014), Zimmer’s £8bn acquisition of Biomet (27 April 2014), Novaris’ £11.9bn worth of transactions with GlaxoSmithKline (22 April 2014), and Pfizer’s £62bn failed bid for AstraZeneca (28 April 2014).