Valeant Pharmaceuticals International of Canada said today that it was pulling its takeover bid for Irvine-based eye drug maker Ista Pharmaceuticals Inc. because of a lack of progress in talks.
Valeant had set a Jan. 31 deadline for Ista to accept the sweetened $360 million takeover offer that it made earlier this month. The increased offer by the Canadian company followed an initial $314-million bid that Ista rejected in December, saying it was too low and not in the best interest of shareholders.
Ista said that several parties have expressed interest in a strategic deal, and emphasized that it needed time to consider any proposals.
“While we continue to make excellent progress and are pleased with the level of interest generated to date, it will take time to complete a thorough and thoughtful review,” said Vince Anido, the drug maker’s chief executive.
Valeant, which has Orange County roots, was “not interested in participating in a lengthy evaluation progress and we are disappointed that the Ista team was not willing to fully explore our proposal by Jan. 31,” Chief Executive Michael Pearson said in a statement.