Valeant opens door to bids for any assets to clear the company's massive debt load

Billy Bambrough
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Valeant To Buy Bausch & Lomb For $8.7 Billion
Up for grabs: Valeant is open to offers on all of its assets (Source: Getty)

The new chief executive of Valeant has said he’s open to flogging more of the company’s assets to try and clear its mounting debt pile.

Joe Papa, who replaced Mike Pearson as chief executive of the embattled Canadian pharmaceuticals company in May, has said the company would assess offers for any of its assets.

Last week Valeant said it would be open to offers for any assets excluding its core dermatology, consumer products, Bausch + Lomb eyecare and Salix gastrointestinal drug businesses.

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However Papa yesterday told reporters at the firm’s annual meeting with investors that Valeant could sell more if the price was right.

“If there is a significant offer, we would always have to assess any offer that comes in to us,” he said.

He did however rule out breaking up Valeant entirely, saying: “I took this job to rebuild this company.”

Earlier this month the struggling company, which has recorded a near 90 per cent drop in its share price over the last year, posted a first-quarter loss of $373.7m (£253m) in the first quarter.

Valeant also dialled back future earnings expectations – now forecasting earnings of $6.60 to $7 per share for the full year, down sharply from its previous guidance for $8.50 to $9.50.

Read more: Last year the former the Valeant CEO said he felt good about 2016

Valeant's share price hit a high of $263.70 in August of 2015 and fell as low as $25.27 in April of 2016 due to doubts that the company could recover from its hefty debt load and concerns over its accounting practises.

Valeant Valeant | mobile image

In May it was revealed Pearson will remain on as a consultant, and pocket a $9m (£5m) severance payment.

Pearson, who since he was appointed CEO in 2008 steered Valeant through a 1,000 per cent share price increase and subsequent collapse, formally left the company in early May after clashing with investors and board members.

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