Amid a Boisterous Takeover, Shire Investor Meeting Keeps Calm

(Bloomberg) -- Shire Plc is at the center of one of the highest-profile takeover battles in the world right now. Its annual meeting in Dublin on Tuesday drew about 20 investors, two journalists and a couple of public relations advisers and was all over in 15 minutes.

Shareholders voted on all 20 resolutions and asked no questions from the floor at the Miesian Plaza on Baggot Street, located close to some of the city’s most famous bars. The board sat at one long table, facing three rows of seats for attendees. Many were empty.

The muted occasion perhaps reflects the disconnect between Shire’s U.S. operational center in Lexington, Massachusetts and its group headquarters that are spread over two relatively inconspicuous blocks in Dublin. A clutch of international drug companies have bases in Ireland, attracted by the nation’s tax structure.

Chairwoman Susan Kilsby acknowledged to the few gathered that shareholders were “acutely” aware of the company’s “disappointing” share price performance in 2017 -- a 17 percent drop. Beyond that, she could say little new, as the board mulled a new offer by Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., restricting what information could be given to investors.

With that, it was pretty much all over.

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