Cigna’s merger with Express Scripts rivals ‘worst in corporate history’

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Activist investor Carl Icahn is urging different Cigna shareholders to vote towards its deal to purchase Categorical Scripts.

In a letter to shareholders, entitled “Cigna’s $60 billion folly,” Icahn claims that Cigna (CI) is dramatically overpaying for a “extremely challenged” Categorical Scripts (ESRX), which faces existential dangers.

A kind of dangers is Amazon, which simply bought on-line prescription drug firm PillPack. Icahn believes Amazon might sooner or later put Categorical Scripts out of enterprise.

“Even when they do survive, exposing Cigna, a thriving firm, to those dangers by buying Categorical Scripts now’s inexplicably ridiculous,” Icahn stated. “Buying Categorical Scripts might properly grow to be one of many worst blunders in company historical past.”

Icahn additionally stated he’s nervous concerning the Trump administration’s efforts to rein in drug prices, coupled with proposals to restrict the flexibility for drug producers to provide rebates to pharmacy advantages managers akin to Categorical Scripts, which is essential to their operations.

“It’s patently ridiculous to pay $60 billion for a corporation with the issues Categorical Scripts now faces,” Icahn stated.

Cigna agreed in March to purchase Categorical Scripts in deal then valued at $67 billion, nevertheless it wants shareholder approval to shut the transaction. Icahn holds lower than 5% of Cigna’s shares. He stated is holds a brief place on Categorical Scripts, betting that the inventory will fall.

Shares of Categorical Scripts plunged final week when the Wall Road Journal first reported that Icahn deliberate to come back out towards the deal.

CNNMoney (New York) First printed August 7, 2018: 7:13 AM ET

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