The all-stock, $8.5 billion transaction in which Actavis (NYSE:AGN) would acquire Ireland-based urology, gastroenterology, dermatology, and women's health pharma specialist Warner Chilcott (UNKNOWN:WCRX.DL), first announced May 20, has received approval recommendations from three leading independent proxy firms, Actavis said today in a statement.

Leading up to a special meeting of Actavis shareholders scheduled for Sept. 10, proxy advisory firms Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), Egan-Jones, and Glass Lewis have all recommended stockholders approve the proposed acquisition of Warner Chilcott, according to Actavis' news release.

The deal, if approved, would create an $11 billion pharma company and, according to the company, make Actavis "the third-largest U.S. specialty pharmaceutical company with approximately $3 billion in annual revenues focused on core therapeutic categories."

When the deal was first announced in late May, Actavis President and CEO Paul Bisaro said "The combination of Actavis and Warner Chilcott creates a strong specialty brand portfolio focused in therapeutic categories with strong growth potential, and is supported by a deep pipeline of development programs."