Institutional pharmacy giants Omnicare, Covington, Ky., and Genesis Health Ventures, Kennett Square, Pa., are battling over a smaller competitor in the field. Omnicare has sued to stop Genesis from acquiring NCS Healthcare, Cleveland, claiming it made an earlier and higher offer to the company. Omnicare officials said the company made a $3-per-share offer for NCS July 26, and after receiving no response made the offer public July 29. Genesis and NCS announced their planned merger the same day, although Omnicare says its offer would "deliver more than twice the value to NCS stockholders." Raising its bid, Omnicare said it now will issue a cash tender offer of $3.50 per share for all outstanding shares of NCS common stock. "We believe that the board of directors of NCS has breached its fiduciary duties by entering into the Genesis agreement while they were fully aware of our superior offer," Omnicare President and CEO Joel Gemunder said. A Genesis spokeswoman said, "There's nothing we can say other than we have legally binding agreements in place and we're proceeding forward." Omnicare is the nation's largest provider of professional pharmacy and related services for nursing homes and other eldercare facilities. Genesis' subsidiary NeighborCare is the third largest provider, followed by NCS. -- by Julie Piotrowski
Omnicare sues to block rival firm's acquisition
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