Pershing Square Capital buys 4.9 per cent stake in Valeant Pharmaceuticals

MONTREAL – The hedge fund that partnered with Valeant Pharmaceuticals in a failed hostile bid for U.S. Botox-maker Allergan has spent US$3.3 billion to acquire a 4.9 per cent stake in the Quebec-based company.

Bill Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management says its various funds have purchased nearly 16.5 million shares of Valeant. The investment represents 16.9 per cent of its portfolio, which includes Canadian Pacific Railway (TSX:CP).

Valeant (TSX:VRX) said in an email it has a good working relationship with Pershing Square and welcomed them as shareholders.

Pershing Square’s investment follows Valeant’s biggest deal in its history, a friendly US$10-billion takeover offer for Salix Pharmaceuticals, a developer of gastrointestinal drugs. It follows a $400-million acquisition on oncology drugmaker Dendreon.

Valeant recently told analysts the acquisitions provide it with new pathways for growth.

On the Toronto Stock Exchange, Valeant’s shares gained $7.14 to close at $257.63 after hitting a record high of $258.81.