Sector News

Pfizer has $33B and the M&A world at its feet

January 26, 2015
Life sciences
Pfizer, which spent much of last year trying to acquire U.K. giant AstraZeneca, is now sitting on about $33 billion in cash, and the company’s deal pedigree has analysts dreaming of major M&A down the line.
 
As Bloomberg notes, that war chest will certainly be a topic of conversation when Pfizer presents its fourth-quarter and full-year results on Tuesday. But until then–and, likely, afterward–it’s anyone’s guess just what the U.S.’s largest drugmaker plans to do with its money.
 
Dissecting Pfizer’s last major overture, the failed $118 billion bid for AstraZeneca, the company was primarily concerned with two things: a U.K. address that could reduce its tax burden and an entry into the blockbuster world of immunotherapies for cancer. Pfizer made up ground on the latter score largely through a roughly $2.9 billion deal with Merck KGaA signed in November, but it remains stuck with a U.S. tax bill.
 
That means it may make another run at Actavis, an Irish-headquartered company whose price tag just got a lot steeper thanks to a $66 billion acquisition of Allergan. Analysts have also bandied about Mylan, Valeant Pharmaceuticals and even GlaxoSmithKline among potential targets.
 
But changing political winds have made such tax-saving moves, called inversions, more difficult and less lucrative, especially for high-profile companies like Pfizer. And, as Thrivent Financial analyst David Heupel told Bloomberg, the company is unlikely to make a big, risky gambit on a high-dollar target.
 
“They’re looking for strategic assets and they’re taking a pretty broad stroke as to what they’re looking at,” Heupel told the news service. “But I think they’re going to take a diligent and disciplined financial approach, and I don’t think that’s going to equate to a lot of opportunity for them.”
 
By Damian Garde
 

comments closed

Related News

February 4, 2023

MedTrace receives U.S. patent for diagnosing the human heart

Life sciences

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued a patent to MedTrace for their method of diagnosing the human heart via 15O-water PET. The patented method is the foundation of the company’s software aQuant, currently under development. Hendrik “Hans” Harms, PhD and Senior Scientist at MedTrace, and Jens Soerensen, Professor and Clinical Advisor to MedTrace, are the originators of the method.

February 4, 2023

Roche taps insider Teresa Graham for top pharma job as setbacks prompt M&A questions

Life sciences

Teresa Graham, currently head of global product strategy for Roche pharma, will become the division’s new CEO next month, Roche said Thursday. Simultaneously, Roche is elevating Levi Garraway, chief medical officer, to the executive committee.

February 4, 2023

J&J’s pharma group quietly works through global overhaul, with layoffs expected to reach multiple countries

Life sciences

Fierce Pharma has obtained internal documents and video of a town hall meeting conducted this week describing what J&J called a “comprehensive review” of its portfolio. Moving forward, J&J plans to operate its vaccines and infectious diseases outfits as one group, the executives explained.

How can we help you?

We're easy to reach