Valeant Shareholders Approve Biovail Buyout, Despite Objections

Shareholders of Aliso Viejo-based Valeant Pharmaceuticals and Canadian firm Biovail have approved Valeant's acquisition by Biovail, despite objections from Biovail founder Eugene Melnyk and a a number of California state lawmakers. The deal--which is expected to result in the loss of 25 percent of Valeant's workforce, or 1,100 jobs--was announced in June, and is worth $3.2 billion. In a letter to Biovail and Valeant board members and executives, founder Melynk said that the merger marks the "destruction of a company" and that the merger will provides only short term financial gain, but will result in "long term pain for thousands of employees, shareholders and debt holders." California assemblymen Jared Huffman and Kevin de Leon, plus California State Senate President pro Tempore Darrell S. Steinberg and California State Assembly Speaker John A. Perez have sent letters to the SEC, requesting a look at the deal due to drastic job losses and tax dollars that Huffman said are being "sucked out of the California economy."