Sector News

Bristol-Myers’ rumored activists ‘haven’t made a decision’ on the company yet: Starboard CEO

February 7, 2019
Life sciences

Activist hedge fund Starboard Value is “certainly interested in the story at Bristol-Myers,” according to its leader. But that doesn’t mean it’s getting involved.

As Starboard’s CEO, Jeff Smith, told CNBC on Tuesday, Bristol-Myers Squibb “might fit” the profile of a company on which Starboard thinks it can have a positive impact. But “it might not fit that profile. We haven’t made that decision,” he said.

The comments come after a Monday Bloomberg report that the proxy brawler had already picked up a stake in BMS. In response, analysts surmised that Starboard may be looking to thwart the New Jersey drugmaker’s $74 billion deal agreement for Celgene, perhaps by getting another pharma giant to buy Bristol.

Still, they expressed doubts around that idea—in part because the list of pharma players who could actually swallow BMS is short, not to mention unwilling.

AbbVie, Pfizer and Novartis could potentially pull it off, “but all these would require a lot of synergies to be accretive,” Bloomberg Intelligence’s Sam Fazeli told the news service, with Credit Suisse’s Vamil Divan adding in a note to clients that, “We would be surprised if activists are successful in pushing for a larger change.”

As CNBC’s David Faber noted, Starboard also currently has its hands full meddling in other companies, such as pizza chain Papa John’s.

Starboard has “so many different things going on, to take a significant stake where they would actually argue against a deal—who knows,” he said Monday. He also pointed to last year’s deal pact between United Technologies Corporation and Rockwell Collins, reminding viewers of then-rumors that Starboard could pick up a stake and argue against that deal. “Nothing ever came of it,” he said.

By Carly Helfand

Source: Fierce Pharma

comments closed

Related News

January 22, 2023

Sun Pharma to buy Concert Pharmaceuticals for $576m

Life sciences

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries has signed a definitive agreement to buy all outstanding shares of Concert Pharmaceuticals in a deal valued at $576m. Under the deal, the company will buy all shares of Concert common stock through a tender offer for $8.00 per share in cash upfront payment.

January 22, 2023

Novo Nordisk diabetes pill wins FDA approval for first-line use

Life sciences

The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved Novo Nordisk’s diabetes pill Rybelsus as an initial treatment to lower blood sugar levels, a label expansion that will allow it to compete more directly with other oral drugs from Merck & Co. and Eli Lilly.

January 22, 2023

Bayer feeling more heat from activist investors, this time from Bluebell

Life sciences

Since making an ill-advised $63 billion buy of Monsanto in 2018, Bayer has faced heaps of pressure from investors that have called for the company to oust its leadership and to restructure. Now comes new pressure from a familiar source. Bluebell Capital Partners has bought an undisclosed stake in the company and is agitating for a breakup, sources told Reuters.

How can we help you?

We're easy to reach