Boston Scientific topsJ#x0026;J; bid for Guidant

Associated Press

NATICK, Mass. -- Boston Scientific Corp. offered about $25 billion for Guidant Corp. today, topping by more than $3 billion what Johnson &; Johnson agreed to pay for the implantable medical device manufacturer last month. Guidant shares climbed 10 percent in premarket trading.

Boston Scientific, which makes heart care devices, is offering $72 per share for Guidant, consisting of $36 in cash and a fixed number of company shares valued at $36 per share.

The offer is about 14 percent above Johnson &; Johnson's renegotiated deal of $63.43 per Guidant share, or $21.5 billion, based on $33.25 in cash and 0.493 share of Johnson &; Johnson common stock for each share.

A Johnson &; Johnson spokesperson did not immediately return a call seeking comment this morning.


Johnson &; Johnson and Guidant renegotiated their deal when J&J; considered pulling its original offer made last December after Guidant suffered through the recall of thousands of implantable heart devices over the summer. Guidant sued Johnson &; Johnson to bring it back to the negotiating table. J&J; had originally offered to pay $76 a share for Guidant.

Boston Scientific said its acquisition of Guidant, should it go through, would close in the first quarter of 2006 and create the world's largest maker of heart devices.

Shares of Guidant surged $6.20, or 10 percent, to $68.02 a share in premarket activity.

Johnson &; Johnson shares rose 19 cents in premarket activity. Boston Scientifc shares fell $1.58, or 5.8 percent, to $25.75.

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