Kolmar Korea is one step nearer to win the bidding war to acquire CJ HealthCare, the pharmaceutical unit of CJ Group.
Pharmaceutical sources said CJ Group and the auction manager Morgan Stanley picked Kolmar Korea as the preferred bidder in selling the drugmaker.
Earlier, news reports had said that Hahn & Co. was the strongest candidate to take over CJ HealthCare because it made the highest offer at 1.4 trillion won ($1.3 billion).
However, CJ Group and Morgan Stanley reportedly chose Kolmar Korea for operating a similar business and ensuring job security for the drugmaker’s employees.
Kolmar Korea offered the bid price at 1.2 trillion won, news reports said.
CJ HealthCare was cautious in commenting on the reason why Kolmar Korea became the preferred bidder.
“We cannot confirm the facts yet. There is nothing to disclose,” an official at CJ HealthCare said. “We have to see if this will lead to a signing of a deal.”
Kolmar Korea joined the CJ HealthCare auction by forming a consortium with private fund operators H&Q Korea, Mirae Asset Private Equity, and STIC Investments.
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