AstraZeneca shareholder counsels Pfizer takeover rethink

AstraZeneca quickly rejected a takeover offer from US pharmaceuticals firm Pfizer.

Matt Dunham/AP/File
Two Kingdom Street, which houses the headquarters of AstraZeneca, is seen in the Paddington area of London. The board of AstraZeneca has rejected the improved $119 billion takeover offer from UA drugmaker Pfizer, May 19, a decision that has caused a sharp slide in the UK company's share price as investors think it effectively brings an end to the protracted and increasingly bitter takeover saga.

AstraZeneca shareholder Schroders has urged the pharmaceutical firm to reconsider its rejection of a takeover offer from U.S. drugmaker Pfizer.

The fund manager, which holds a 2 percent stake in AstraZeneca, is the biggest shareholder to call publicly for renewed takeover talks.

Schroders said Tuesday it "notes with disappointment the quick rejection by the AstraZeneca board of the latest offer from Pfizer." It urged AstraZeneca management "to recommence their engagement with Pfizer, and subsequently their shareholders."

The board of AstraZeneca this week rejected an improved $119 billion takeover offer from Pfizer, saying it significantly undervalued the company and its drug portfolio.

Under British takeover rules Pfizer has until Monday to submit a new offer, but it has said it won't raise its offer again or launch a hostile takeover bid.

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