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Johnson & Johnson Agrees to Buy DePuy

Reuters

Johnson & Johnson expanded its role in the market for orthopedic devices, agreeing to buy DePuy Inc. from Switzerland’s Roche Holding for $35 per share, or about $3.5 billion. With 1997 sales of about $770 million, Warsaw, Ind.-based DePuy is one of the world’s largest makers of products to reconstruct damaged or diseased joints, repair bone fractures and correct spinal injuries. It sells products under trademarks such as ACE, OrthoTech and DePuy. New Brunswick, N.J.-based Johnson & Johnson would pay Roche $2.9 billion for its 84% stake in DePuy. It would then begin a cash tender offer Monday for the outstanding shares of DePuy at $35 per share. The boards of Johnson & Johnson and DePuy have approved the deal. The acquisition is subject to approval by U.S. and European regulators and is expected to close in the fourth quarter. The announcement boosted the stock of DePuy to $34.56, up $3.06 on the New York Stock Exchange. Johnson & Johnson slipped 78 cents to close at $76.25, also on the NYSE.


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