Astrazeneca told to engage with Pfizer boss Read

Michael Bow
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ASTRAZENECA shareholders yesterday urged the firm’s management to start engaging with Pfizer bosses over a potential takeover deal.

Pfizer chief Ian Read, who was last night plotting his next move in his bid to buy the UK drug giant, met with City institutions yesterday to lay out his plans for a combined company.

One institutional shareholder said Pfizer made a “compelling” case to bring the group’s two drug pipelines together. Astrazeneca yesterday provided another update on its pipeline, part of its defence tactic against a Pfizer takeover, which also includes plans to grow revenues by 75 per cent by 2023, prompting some scepticism from analysts and investors.

“They risk losing credibility,” one shareholder said. Astrazeneca has so far rebuffed Pfizer’s takeover bid.