Margins, margins, margins. That's an inevitable mantra among top investors and analysts. Just ask Novartis CEO Joe Jimenez, who's pledged big improvements in the Swiss drugmaker's spread. Or Eli Lilly CFO Derica Rice, who's had to explain why his company can promise to maintain margins as its sales spiral downward.
When Jazz Pharmaceuticals bought out the rare-disease drug developer Gentium for a billion dollars late last year, the company picked up a new therapy for severe veno-occlusive disease that it went on to launch in Europe last April. Now it's buying back the U.S. rights to the drug--which Gentium had bargained away to Sigma-Tau--for $75 million in cash and up to $175 million in milestones. And that extra cash will be staked entirely on its ability to shove the long-delayed drug through the FDA approval process.
Thanks to a steady flow of expensive new cancer therapies--and a public brouhaha over the cost of next-gen treatments for hepatitis C--drug prices are on center stage. We thought we'd look into the products whose prices have increased the most since 2007, to see how and why their prices are leaping.
Ireland's Jazz Pharmaceuticals, which has been buying up some new drug assets, has decided it will spend some money on manufacturing as well. It is building its first manufacturing facility there, adding to a string of plant projects in that country.
As Jazz Pharmaceuticals rolls on with an orphan drug deal spree, shareholders of Gentium, its latest target, are suing to stop the acquisition, saying the Irish company's $1 billion offer is far too low.
Tiny Aerial BioPharma has found a home for its promising narcolepsy treatment, handing the drug over to Jazz Pharmaceuticals for as much as $397 million.
Industry analysts can't help but handicap which drugmakers will be the next target of heated industry M&A interest. So three days into the new year, they are putting their money on Jazz Pharmaceuticals, the Ireland-based company that has itself been in acquisition mode.
Ireland-based biopharma companies are all the rage these days. Blessed by advantageous tax laws, Elan and Warner Chilcott fell to takeover bids. And now that Jazz Pharmaceuticals has been bolstered by the addition of Gentium's rare-disease drug portfolio, it's back on the hit list of most likely takeover targets.
Jazz Pharmaceuticals, the Ireland-based company known for its narcolepsy drug Xyrem, is often the subject of takeover talk. Because of its specialty drug portfolio and low-tax domicile, analysts often see it as a potential target. But the drugmaker has kept up a steady drumbeat of mostly smaller deals itself to expand its line of specialty drugs. Today it jumped the $1 billion deal fence with plans to buy Italy-base, Gentium and get its EU-approved orphan drug Defitelio.
Ireland's Jazz Pharmaceuticals is betting $1 billion that Italian biotech Gentium and its orphan treatment Defitelio can sustain their momentum, buying the company to get its hands on a drug for a rare liver disease.