Come On, Amylin, Just a Little Clue?


Maybe Amylin Pharmaceuticals (NAS: AMLN) thinks that letting investors read between the lines is good enough, but I think they deserve a little more.

Last month, Bloomberg reported that Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYS: BMY) had made a $22-per-share offer to buy the company. No word from Amylin affirming or denying the report.

Earlier this week Carl Icahn reportedly dropped his lawsuit against the company after talking with CEO Daniel Bradbury. Icahn didn't report what the two talked about, but since Icahn was arguing that Amylin should be sold and now he's content, it seems reasonable to assume the company is up for auction.

If the company is willing to share information with Icahn, why not with everyone else? Icahn caries a little more weight since he owns nearly 9% of the company, but I don't think that's a very reasonable excuse.

I was hoping we'd get some more information on the earnings conference call yesterday, but investors got nothing beyond Bradbury's commenting, "Amylin's Board of Directors is fully aware of its fiduciary duties and is committed to always acting in the best interest of stockholders. The board continually considers all options available and is relentlessly focused on creating the greatest value for our stockholders." Multiple analysts on the call asked questions about a potential sale to Bristol or someone else, but got nothing out of Bradbury. Clearly I'm not the only one who thinks investors deserve a clue.

Compare Amylin's shenanigans to how Human Genome Sciences (NAS: HGSI) treated its recent unsolicited bid: To paraphrase, "GlaxoSmithKline (NYS: GSK) made an offer; we think it's too low; we'll look for higher offers and let you know when we have one." All in one press release, no less.

The biggest hint of Amylin's future plans will come if Amylin signs an ex-U.S. deal for its products. Amylin regained the full rights to Bydureon and Byetta from its former partner Eli Lilly (NYS: LLY) , but doesn't have the capacity to sell the drugs outside the U.S. A deal would likely signal that a sale isn't going to happen since an acquirer will likely want the global rights.

Unless of course the ex-U.S. licensing deal was some sort of try-before-you-buy deal that eventually leads to a takeout.

But now I'm just guessing. Whose fault is that, Amylin?

At the time thisarticle was published Fool contributor Brian Orelli holds no position in any company mentioned. Click here to see his holdings and a short bio. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of GlaxoSmithKline. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Copyright © 1995 - 2012 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.