Sun and Taro CEOs in direct compromise talks

A senior Franklin Templeton representative was also present as Adv. Ram Caspi sought to mediate the sale of Taro to Sun.

In a surprise twist in the disputed merger between India's Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. and Taro Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (Pink Sheets: TAROF) sources inform "Globes" that Sun CEO Dilip Shanghvi and Taro chairman Barrie Levitt met in Israel last Thursday. They both flew to Israel to discuss a compromise, which would enable Sun to acquire Taro. The two met in the offices of Adv. Ram Caspi who is mediating the compromise.

Sources also inform "Globes" that a senior representative of US investment management firm Franklin Templeton was also present at the mediation meeting between Levitt and Shanghvi. Franklin Templeton holds 13.1% of Taro's shares.

At the start of negotiations in January 2008, Sun offered to acquire Taro for $9.50 per share, while Levitt wanted to sell for $15 per share.

Prior to last Thursday's discussions Caspi had mediated by sitting with both sides of the dispute separately. This latest meeting was the first time that the parties had come together to try and reach a compromise agreement that will enable the acquisition of the veteran Haifa company by the Indian firm to be completed, by raising the offer to Taro's shareholders.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on February 22, 2009

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2009

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