Crucell calls EGM to explain agreed J&J bid

AMSTERDAM, Oct 14 (BestGrowthStock) – Dutch biotech firm Crucell
(CRCL.AS: ) said on Thursday it would hold an extraordinary
shareholders’ meeting on Dec. 10 to discuss an agreed bid by
Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N: ) to which some investors object.

“Crucell takes its relationship with its shareholders very
seriously and appreciates the interest shown by them in the
proposed transaction,” it said in a statement, adding the
meeting was to honour the request of several shareholders to
discuss the offer in more detail.

This meeting will not be to decide on the offer as the
statutory shareholders’ meeting as required by Dutch takeover
regulations will be held six business days prior to the
expiration of the acceptance period of the offer which is in
January 2011. [ID:nMKW73625a]

Earlier this month some key shareholder urged Crucell to
drop support for the $2.5 billion offer by J&J and Crucell
rejected their call for an EGM. But Crucell said on Wednesday it
would recommend the U.S. healthcare company’s cash offer of
24.75 euros per share. [ID:nLDE695056]

Van Herk, Crucell’s second-biggest shareholder with a 10.02
percent stake, has said Crucell’s stand-alone value should be
27.50 euros per share and it would ask Crucell management to
convene a shareholder meeting to discuss the bid.

Crucell had already rebuffed a request from the Dutch
investors group VEB to quickly hold a meeting over J&J’s offer,
citing a lack of documentation. Johnson & Johnson is already the
Dutch firm’s biggest holder with a 17.9 percent stake.

Van Herk, Delta Lloyd and Robeco, jointly holding at least
15.5 percent of Crucell’s shares, have broadly criticised the
bid as too low. Van Herk is an investment fund, based in
Rotterdam and created by the Van Herk family in the 1950s.

Delta Lloyd has said Crucell needs to convince it to tender
its shares at the current price.
(Reporting by Marcel Michelson; Editing by David Holmes)

Crucell calls EGM to explain agreed J&J bid