Cypress Bio Rejects Buyout Offer, Shutting Down Commercial Business

8/6/10Follow @bvbigelow

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system disorders.” The company also says it is being advised by Jefferies & Company, Inc. and Perella Weinberg Partners, with legal counsel from the Cooley law firm.

While Cypress says it will continue to fill orders for its Avise line of personalized medicine services, the company will either sell or discontinue the business by the end of September.

The company estimates that exiting its commercial business will decrease its operating costs by about $10 million a year, although operating results for the rest of this year will be adversely affected by as much as $4.5 million in severance payments and other charges.

Ramius, predictably, denounces the move, questions the sale of the fibromyalgia drug to Forest, and demands to review documents related to the marketing agreement.

In a statement issued yesterday, Ramius Partner Managing Director Jeffrey C. Smith, says, “This is just another prime example of the Board failing to exercise its fiduciary responsibility to represent the best interest of all shareholders. Rather than rushing to dispose of the Co-Promote, the Board should have considered its potential strategic value to an acquirer and determined how best to maximize its value.”

Smith concludes by calling on Cypress to “halt all extraordinary transactions.” A spokesman for Ramius declined to comment today, but hinted there is more news to come.

Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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