Guidant Shareholders Approve J&J Merger
Shareholders of medical devicemaker Guidant voted overwhelmingly in favor of Johnson & Johnson's (J&J) planned $25.4 billion acquisition of the Indianapolis-based company.
The merger, which still must win regulatory approval in the U.S. and Europe, would be the largest business deal in the 119-year history of New Brunswick, N.J.-based healthcare products giant J&J. Analysts expect a tough review from regulators because Guidant and J&J subsidiary Cordis are among the few companies that make heart stents -- tiny wire-mesh cylinders that are expanded inside diseased arteries to keep them open.
Under terms of the merger announced Dec. 15, 2004, J&J will pay $76 in cash and stock for each share of Guidant, or $25.4 billion. Guidant revenues totaled $3.77 billion last year. Guidant said it expects the deal to close in the third quarter of this year.