Saunders

Saunders

Drug makers Allergan PLC and Pfizer Inc. are eyeing a plan to make current Allergan Chief Executive Brent Saunders head of a combined company if they reach a takeover deal, Bloomberg Business reported today, citing unnamed sources.

Shares of Dublin, Ireland-based Allergan, whose aesthetic medicine and eye drug hub is in Irvine, were up 2% in after-hours trading after closing up 4% to a market value of $121 billion.

New York-based Pfizer said last month that it was in “preliminary friendly discussions” about buying Allergan, which operates from New Jersey, according to Bloomberg.

Sources told Bloomberg that if the companies combine, Saunders, who is 45, would take the reins of the faster-growing business of new brand-name drugs. Another unit would contain older drugs at or near the end of their patent protection, making it a likely candidate for spinoff.

Spokespeople for Allergan and Pfizer declined comment on the reports.