AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot has long argued that shedding some of the company's noncore businesses could help jump-start sales, adding cash to its reservoirs as it chases its lofty sales goals. Now, the British drugmaker is taking another step in that direction as it passes off one of its rare cancer drugs to Sanofi, getting $300 million in the process.
Forget everything you thought you knew last week about some of the generics industry's biggest players. Teva is no longer enmeshed in a hostile pursuit of rival Mylan, and Allergan is no longer touting its status as a hybrid brand-and-generics specialist. Instead, they're teaming up with one another.
The big news in biopharma this weekend is the unconfirmed report that Allergan is looking to sell its generics business to Teva. But Allergan execs didn't let the headlines distract them from another goal of CEO Brent Saunders': building the pipeline.
Stryker reiterated that acquisitions are its top priority for cash. But so far during the first half of this year, the orthopedics giant has spent a mere $92 million of its cash on acquisitions--while accruing an additional $1.8 billion in cash to sit on a pile of a whopping $3.6 billion in cash at the end of last quarter.
The way Shire CEO Flemming Ornskov sees it, smart dealmaking could set Shire on track to join its Big Biotech peers and build out its portfolio in rare diseases. But even though a little M&A could go a long way in helping the company achieve its aspirations, Shire isn't going to settle for whatever comes its way.
Wannabe acquirer Teva has built up a 4.6% stake in generics rival Mylan--and that's enough for the newly Dutch pharma. Mylan's independent foundation--known in Dutch as a stichting--has exercised an option to acquire shares that let it control 50% of the company, part of its plan to fend off a hostile takeover.
Biotech's ongoing boom has inflated valuations for upstart drugmakers, and Eli Lilly CEO John Lechleiter said his company is wary of getting involved in any high-dollar bidding wars to bring in new treatments.
Contract drug developer Avista Pharma Solutions bought the manufacturing, development and animal health services business of rival Scynexis, building up its capacity to take a larger share of an expanding market.
Industry bigwig St. Jude Medical is discussing a buyout of specialist Thoratec, a maker of left ventricular assist devices, which give heart failure patients awaiting a donated heart a bridge to organ transplantation by pumping their blood in the meantime. Thoratec stock is up 18% to around $58 on the rumor, as of 3 p.m.
Don't get Horizon Pharma wrong. It intends to pursue Depomed as an M&A target whether the California company likes it or not. But it would prefer for Depomed to like it--and in an effort to spur a "friendly, negotiated transaction," it's raising its bid.