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Valeant won't overpay for Salix: Bill Ackman

Valeant won't overpay for Salix: Bill Ackman
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Michael Pearson, chairman and CEO of Valeant Pharmaceuticals, won't pay too much for Salix Pharmaceuticals, which earlier this week received a competing offer from Endo International, billionaire investor Bill Ackman told CNBC on Friday.

Ackman's Pershing Square Capital Management disclosed Monday a 4.9 percent stake in Canada-based Valeant, which had sought his help last year in its failed bid to buy Botox-maker Allergan. After a contentious seven months, Allergan agreed in November to a $66 billion buyout from Irish rival Actavis.

"I know Mike Pearson very well. I worked with him for a year. He's the most disciplined buyer of companies. He's not going to overpay for Salix," Ackman said in a "Squawk Box " interview, which focused on a reported FBI investigation of Ackman's positions on Herbalife.

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Dublin-based specialty drugmaker Endo on Wednesday made an $11 billion cash and stock offer for Salix, which had already agreed to a $10 billion cash offer from Valeant. Salix said it would consider the Endo bid.

"In order for them to take the Endo transaction they have to walk away from an all-cash deal," Ackman said. "If you think Valeant is getting it on the cheap, then you should buy Valeant stock, which is what we did. We think Valeant stock is very cheap."

Raleigh, North Carolina-based Salix makes medicines for gastrointestinal disorders, including Pepcid and Zegerid.

Valeant, Salix and Endo did not immediately respond to CNBC requests for comment.

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—Reuters contributed to this report.