William Ackman's Pershing Square Capital Management said it had filed a lawsuit seeking confirmation that its request to hold a special shareholder meeting of Allergian Inc. would not trigger Allergan's poison pill takeover defense.
Ackman, who owns nearly 10 percent of Allergan, last week filed documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission to call a shareholder meeting to elect new directors to the company's board. The Botox maker has rejected a $53 billion joint offer from Ackman and Canadian drugmaker Valeant Pharmaceuticals International.
An Allergan spokeswoman declined to comment immediately.
Allergan special meeting
Allergan adopted the one-year shareholder rights plan on April 22, the day Valeant and Ackman made the offer, saying it needed time to consider takeover proposals.
Allergan's shareholder rights plan, or poison pill, will be triggered if a person or group acquires 10 percent or more of its shares. A poison pill aims to dilute a stock's value by flooding the market with more shares; this makes it pricier for a shareholder to get a controlling stake.
The lawsuit filed in Delaware Court of Chancery said that it followed a request to Allergan from Pershing Square on June 6 seeking confirmation that Allergan would not use its poison pill to impede Ackman's request for a special meeting.
[Read Full article: Ackman seeks court ruling on Allergan special meeting]