Robeco sells entire stake in J&J target Crucell

*AMSTERDAM (BestGrowthStock) – A shareholder in Dutch biotech Crucell (CRCL.AS: ), subject to an agreed offer by U.S.-based Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N: ), has sold all its shares in the firm, underlining market doubts a higher offer will emerge.

“Our fund manager looks at where he can expect upward potential. He has compared a potential higher bid versus the upside potential at other Dutch stocks and decided to switch,” Robeco spokesman Ronald Florisson said.

Robeco’s holding, about 1.5 percent of Crucell’s share capital, has been sold on the open market over several days in the past week, Florisson said.

J&J, which owns 17.9 percent of Crucell, is willing to pay 1.75 billion euros ($2.47 billion) for shares it does not own.

Crucell shares have traded below the J&J offer of 24.75 euros per share despite opposition from second-biggest shareholder Van Herk. It says Crucell’s standalone value should be 27.50 euros per share.

Van Herk held 10.02 percent of Crucell at September 22.

At 0823 GMT (4:23 a.m. EDT), Crucell shares were down 0.04 percent at 24.54 euros, underperforming the Amsterdam midcap (.AMX: ) index which was up 0.5 percent.

Crucell, which recommends the J&J offer, said on Thursday it would hold an extraordinary shareholders’ meeting on December 10 to discuss the bid.

($1=.7095 Euro)

(Reporting by Gilbert Kreijger; editing by David Hulmes)

Robeco sells entire stake in J&J target Crucell