Sector News

More Valeant up for bid: Weighs sale of eye-surgery biz

November 3, 2016
Life sciences

Another day, another Valeant asset sale rumor. Less than 24 hours after word got out that Valeant and Takeda were in Salix deal talks, the embattled drugmaker is said to be exploring a sale of its eye-surgery business, too.

The equipment business–which Valeant acquired when it snapped up Bausch & Lomb three years back–could nab up to $2.5 billion, The Wall Street Journal reports. But the sale process is still in the early stages, meaning there’s no guarantee it’ll happen.

Valeant has been searching for ways to drum up cash as it struggles under an M&A-fueled mountain of debt. New CEO Joseph Papa has touted divestments as a way to do just that, and influential board member Bill Ackman has suggested an all-out Bausch & Lomb IPO could do the trick, too.

The Canadian pharma isn’t interested in giving up the contact lenses, solutions and prescription eye drugs B&L brought over, though, the WSJ’s sources say, and a spokesman told the newspaper that the “Bausch & Lomb franchise and its dedicated team are a critical part of our business.”

When it comes to other pieces of the puzzle, though? Valeant may finally be ready to bid farewell. The company is “in discussions with third parties for various divestitures,” a spokesman told the Journal.

One thing’s now for sure–those divestitures include Salix, the GI drugmaker whose 2015 purchase created much of the company’s current debt burden. And as the WSJ reported Tuesday, Valeant may have a willing buyer in Takeda, which is reportedly weighing a $10 billion deal that includes $8.5 billion in cash.

That cash could come in handy more than ever, thanks to a federal accounting fraud probe into Valeant’s former relationship with now-dead specialty pharmacy Philidor. If the feds act, the company could owe sizeable penalties, not to mention the hefty legal fees required to deal with this and other investigations, as well as lawsuits.

“We strongly suggest investors consider the risks of potential sizable financial penalties and costly legal actions on a company with more than $30 billion of debt that has already sought debt waivers twice,” Wells Fargo analyst David Maris wrote this week in a note to clients.

By Carly Helfand

Source: Fierce Pharma

comments closed

Related News

September 25, 2022

Rise of the machines: Novo Nordisk pledges $200M to create first quantum computer for life sciences

Life sciences

Big Pharma has long seen the potential for AI and machine learning to accelerate drug development. But Novo Nordisk is going a step further by channeling $200 million toward the creation of a computer that will outrun anything in existence.

September 25, 2022

Mount Sinai AI uncovers new brain analysis method to predict dementia, Alzheimer’s disease

Life sciences

Current methods for diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease rely on a complex combination of self- and caregiver-reported symptoms, a physical examination and either a PET scan or a spinal tap to look for evidence of amyloid plaque build-ups in the brain. But a new artificial intelligence-based method may make the diagnostic process a much more objective one.

September 25, 2022

New AstraZeneca-backed report finds big money behind diverse owners and entrepreneurs in Europe

Life sciences

There is lots of talk about diversity and inclusion in business, including in pharma and medtech. A new report by the Open Political Economy Network (OPEN), a think tank focusing on migration and diversity, released its “Minority Businesses Matter: Europe” report highlighting the successes and challenges of ethnic minority-owned businesses in Europe.