Merck & Co., Inc.Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE: MRK) and Schering-Plough Corporation (NYSE: SGP) announced that their Boards of Directors have unanimously approved a definitive merger agreement under which Merck and Schering-Plough will combine, under the name Merck, in a stock and cash transaction. Under the terms of the agreement, Schering-Plough shareholders will receive 0.5767 shares and $10.50 in cash for each share of Schering-Plough. Each Merck share will automatically become a share of the combined company. Merck Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Richard T. Clark will lead the combined company.

Based on the closing price of Merck stock on March 6, 2009, the consideration to be received by Schering-Plough shareholders is valued at $23.61 per share, or $41.1 billion in the aggregate. This price represents a premium to Schering-Plough shareholders of approximately 34 percent based on the closing price of Schering-Plough stock on March 6, 2009. The consideration also represents a premium of approximately 44 percent based on the average closing price of the two stocks over the last 30 trading days.

Upon closing of the transaction, Merck shareholders are expected to own approximately 68 percent of the combined company, and Schering-Plough shareholders are expected to own approximately 32 percent. Merck anticipates that the transaction will be modestly accretive to non-GAAP EPS1 in the first full year following completion and significantly accretive thereafter.

"We are creating a strong, global healthcare leader built for sustainable growth and success," said Mr. Clark. "The combined company will benefit from a formidable research and development pipeline, a significantly broader portfolio of medicines and an expanded presence in key international markets, particularly in high-growth emerging markets. The efficiencies we gain will allow us to invest in strategic opportunities, while creating meaningful value for shareholders.

"We look forward to joining forces with an outstanding partner we know well and that shares our commitment to patients, employees and the communities where we work and live. Through their talent and dedication, Schering-Plough employees have built an industry leading R&D engine and late-stage pipeline that is complementary to our own. We are confident that, together, Merck and Schering-Plough will make a meaningful difference in the future of global healthcare," Mr. Clark added.

Fred Hassan, chairman and chief executive officer of Schering-Plough, said, "Over the last six years, Schering-Plough colleagues have transformed our company into a strong competitor in the global pharmaceutical industry. We have built a strong, diverse business and a robust pipeline that offers hope to patients who are waiting for new medicines. I am proud of what we have accomplished. Our success is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our colleagues in every country. We are joining forces with Merck, our long-term partner in our cholesterol joint venture, to create a dynamic new leader in the pharmaceutical industry. By harnessing the strengths of both companies, the combined entity will be well-positioned to further deliver on our shared goal of discovering new therapies for patients to help them live healthier, happier lives."

"The talent and dedication of Schering-Plough scientists has helped to build an outstanding clinical development pipeline," said Peter S. Kim, Ph.D., Merck executive vice president, and president of Merck Research Laboratories. "Schering-Plough's considerable biologics expertise will complement Merck's novel proprietary biologics platform and aligns with our commitment to build a powerful biologics presence. The Schering-Plough and Merck pipelines are remarkably complementary and will greatly increase our ability to deliver important new medicines to patients. I believe the combined pipeline will be the best in the industry, by far."

Strategic Benefits of the Transaction

  • Complementary Product Portfolios and Pipelines Focused on Key Therapeutic Areas: The combination significantly broadens Merck's portfolio of medicines - an engine for consistent, sustainable growth - driven in part by the addition of valuable products with long periods of exclusivity. By leveraging the combined company's expanded product offerings, Merck expects to benefit from additional revenue growth opportunities. For example, the combined company will have expanded opportunities for life-cycle management through the introduction of potential new combinations and formulations of existing products. In addition, Merck and Schering-Plough together have high-potential early-, mid- and late-stage pipeline candidates. The transaction will double the number of potential medicines Merck has in Phase III development, bringing the total to 18.
  • Robust R&D to Deliver Innovative Medicines for Patients: Merck and Schering-Plough both have proven track records of breakthrough research and scientific discovery. The combined company will have a product pipeline with greater depth and breadth, and numerous promising drug candidates. With greater resources, the combined company will have the financial flexibility to invest in these candidates as well as external R&D opportunities and to build on the strong legacies of both companies.
  • Stronger Commercial Organization: Both Merck and Schering-Plough have proven teams of talented and experienced employees with strong customer relationships. The progress Merck and Schering-Plough have made in implementing new customer-centric selling models will help ensure the smooth and efficient integration of the two commercial operations. The combined company's broader product portfolio will help its sales force to be more effective, increasing its ability to help physicians and healthcare systems improve patient outcomes. Schering-Plough brings key advantages to Merck through its focus on specialty therapeutic areas and its strength in international markets.
  • Expanded Global Presence with Geographically Diverse Revenue Base: Schering-Plough generates about 70 percent of its revenue outside of the United States, including more than $2 billion in annual revenue from emerging markets. This will dramatically accelerate Merck's own international growth efforts, including the company's goal of reaching top five market share in targeted emerging markets. The combined company will have an industry-leading global team of marketing and sales professionals. In addition, with a more geographically diverse mix of business, the combined company is expected to generate more than 50 percent of its revenue³ outside the United States.
  • Increased Manufacturing Capabilities: The combined manufacturing operations of Merck and Schering-Plough will considerably increase manufacturing capabilities, adding more capacity to support anticipated growth in biologics and sterile medicines. Merck will achieve even greater synergies by applying its lean manufacturing and sourcing strategies to the expanded operations.

Financial Benefits of the Transaction

  • Strong Financial Profile: The combined 2008 revenues³ of the two companies totaled $47 billion. Post-transaction, the combined company will have a strong balance sheet with a cash and investments balance of approximately $8 billion. Merck believes it will maintain its current credit ratings. In addition, the combined company's broad product portfolio is expected to generate robust cash flow.
  • Commitment to Maintain Merck Dividend: Merck's Board of Directors is committed to maintaining the dividend at the current level following the closing of the transaction. Merck currently pays an annual dividend of $1.52 per share, which, on an as-converted basis, represents a three fold increase for Schering-Plough shareholders. In addition, the combined company will continue Merck's share repurchase program after the closing of the transaction.
  • Substantial Cost Savings: Merck expects to achieve substantial cost savings of approximately $3.5 billion annually beyond 2011. These cost savings are expected to come from all areas across the combined company and from the full integration of the Merck/Schering-Plough Pharmaceuticals cholesterol joint venture. These cost savings are in addition to the previously announced ongoing cost reduction initiatives at both companies.
  • Accretive to Earnings: The transaction is anticipated to be modestly accretive to non-GAAP EPS¹ in the first full year following completion and significantly accretive thereafter.
  • Ability to Optimize Investments for Maximum Benefit: The substantial cost savings expected to be achieved through this combination will be allocated to the best investment opportunities, including pipeline candidates with the greatest probability of success, as well as licensing opportunities. By optimizing its investments, the combined company will maximize the benefits of strategic growth initiatives and R&D efforts to solidify its position at the forefront of innovation and enhance its scientific and technological leadership.

Following the close of the transaction, the Board of Directors of the combined company will be comprised of the Merck Board and three representatives from Schering-Plough's Board. Richard T. Clark will serve as chairman, president and chief executive officer of the combined company. Fred Hassan, chairman and chief executive officer of Schering-Plough, is committed to continuing the strong operations at Schering-Plough and intends to participate in the integration planning until the close.

Merck's integration team will be led by Adam Schechter, president of Global Pharmaceuticals, who will report to Mr. Clark. Schering-Plough's integration team will be led by Brent Saunders, senior vice president and president, Consumer Health Care, who will report to Mr. Hassan. A key priority is keeping the best talent from both companies. Recognizing that the combination will result in a much larger organization, Merck expects that the substantial majority of Schering-Plough employees will remain with the combined company. In addition, both Merck and Schering-Plough will institute hiring freezes immediately.

The combined company will have its corporate headquarters in Whitehouse Station, NJ.

The aggregate consideration will be comprised of a combination of approximately 44 percent cash and 56 percent stock. The cash portion will be financed with a combination of $9.8 billion from existing cash balances and $8.5 billion from committed financing to be provided by J.P. Morgan.

Transaction Structure
The transaction will be structured as a "reverse merger" in which Schering-Plough, renamed Merck, will continue as the surviving public corporation. The exchange ratio was calculated based on an agreed price of $26.25, with $10.50 in cash and $15.75 in Merck stock, based on a trailing thirty day volume weighted average price of $27.3109. Effective upon the merger, each Merck share will automatically become a share of the combined company. The receipt of shares by Schering-Plough shareholders and the conversion of Merck shares into combined company shares under the transaction is intended to be tax free for U.S. federal income tax purposes. Schering-Plough shareholders will be subject to tax on the cash received up to the amount of gain realized on the shares exchanged.

Merck reaffirmed its expectations for full-year 2009 revenue (as reported by Merck & Co., Inc.) to be in the range of $23.7 billion to $24.2 billion. As previously disclosed, based on current information, revenues are likely to be in the lower half of the range. The company also reiterated its expectations for 2009 non-GAAP EPS to range from $3.15 to $3.30, excluding certain items, and a 2009 GAAP EPS range of $2.95 to $3.17. The 2009 GAAP EPS guidance includes a pretax charge of approximately $400 million to $600 million associated with the company's global restructuring program. This guidance excludes any impact from this transaction, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter.

Merck is targeting a high single digit non-GAAP EPS1 compound annual growth rate from 2009 (2009 base represents Merck's stand alone non-GAAP EPS guidance) to 2013. Additionally, in 2013, Merck is targeting pretax margins¹ to be nearly 40 percent and free cash flow to be approximately $15 billion. In light of the announced transaction, Merck today provided 2013 guidance that supersedes previously provided 2010 stand-alone guidance.

Approvals and Time to Close
The transaction is subject to approval by Merck and Schering-Plough shareholders and the satisfaction of customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals, including expiration or termination of the applicable waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, as amended, as well as clearance by the European Commission under the EC Merger Regulation and certain other foreign jurisdictions. Merck and Schering-Plough expect to complete the transaction in the fourth quarter of 2009.

About Merck
Merck & Co., Inc. is a global research-driven pharmaceutical company dedicated to putting patients first. Established in 1891, Merck currently discovers, develops, manufactures and markets vaccines and medicines to address unmet medical needs. The company devotes extensive efforts to increase access to medicines through far-reaching programs that not only donate Merck medicines but help deliver them to the people who need them. Merck also publishes unbiased health information as a not-for-profit service. For more information, visit

About Schering-Plough
Schering-Plough is an innovation-driven, science-centered global health care company. Through its own biopharmaceutical research and collaborations with partners, Schering-Plough creates therapies that help save and improve lives around the world. The company applies its research-and-development platform to human prescription, animal health and consumer health care products. Schering-Plough's vision is to "Earn Trust, Every Day" with the doctors, patients, customers and other stakeholders served by its colleagues around the world. The company is based in Kenilworth, N.J., and its Web site is