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Forest Labs buying Aptalis for $2.9 billion

NEW YORK (AP) -- Forest Laboratories is buying Aptalis, which specializes in treatments for gastrointestinal problems and cystic fibrosis, for $2.9 billion in cash.

Forest Labs President and CEO Brent Saunders said in a statement Wednesday that the transaction would help his company diversify its business. There's an anticipated $125 million in cost savings from the combination.

Its shares rose more than 7 percent in premarket trading.

Forest Laboratories Inc. is buying the privately held Aptalis from its shareholders, which include private investment firm TPG.

The acquisition is expected to add about 78 cents per share to Forest's 2015 adjusted earnings and almost $700 million in revenue.

The deal requires review by anti-trust authorities in the U.S. and Canada. The buyout is targeted to close in the first half of 2014.

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