As previously indicated was possible, the proposed Vectura acquisition has turned into a little bit of a bidding war.
Private equity firm, Carlyle Group, upped their offer to $1.3 billion on Friday to top PM's offer of $1.2 billion, and received board approval for it. However, today, PM upped their offer to $1.4 billion to counter Carlyle. The price is getting somewhat expensive, but I think PM still prevails since they are buying it more for technology and expertise to fuel longer term growth, than just for trying to extract/flip it for profits like Carlyle is. An extra $200 million is not chump change, but neither is it hugely material to PM. Meanwhile, any potential investment return for Carlyle obviously decreases the higher the price goes.
Carlyle and others in the press are trying to argue that a tobacco company shouldn't own a medical device company, and are making noise about getting the UK government to block PM to protect other "stakeholders". Anything is possible, but unless things have changed, I believe UK law has always been pretty favorable to the highest bidder in these types of situations. So unless, Carlyle wants to bid even higher, I think the board pretty much has to accept PM's offer as it is now better for Vectura shareholders, regardless of what other "stakeholders" want.