Tax inversion deals--buying a controlling share in a sizable company to shave a corporate tax rate--are all the rage among pharma players. But to Ken Frazier, doing a mega deal just to pull off tax inversion doesn't make sense, at least not for Merck.
A little more than two months after announcing a deal to merge with Canada's QLT in a tax-cutting move, Auxilium Pharmaceuticals rolled out a plan today to ax 30% of its staff, narrowing its R&D focus and slashing its annual costs by $75 million a year.
Forget Salix Pharmaceuticals and long-gone Shire. No. 1 on Allergan's list of defensive acquisition prospects could be Ireland's Jazz Pharmaceuticals.
Back last April when Brisbane, CA-based Hyperion agreed to pay $20 million in cash and stock for Israel's Andromeda Biotech, while promising $550 million more in milestones, company execs made much of the late-stage data already in hand for a new Type 1 diabetes drug. Today, though, Hyperion's team threw up their hands and surrendered, claiming that they had been duped by a group of Andromeda staffers and an outside biostatistics firm in Israel which had cooked the books on the data to come up with a favorable result.
PetSmart, the largest global retailer of pet healthcare products and pet supplies, is "exploring" the possibility it will put itself up for sale in the wake of its acquisition of online pet specialty retailer Pet360.com.
Many a U.S. drugmaker has pounced on an opportunity to pick up a foreign company, haul overseas and reap the tax rewards. But while rumors this summer said Illinois-based Hospira would be jumping on the tax-inversion bandwagon, its deal isn't moving quite so quickly.
Executives at India's Wockhardt insist the troubled generics maker is not for sale--nada, no way. But that has not stopped analysts from discussing matchmaking, especially since execs at India's Lupin acknowledged recently that they analyzed whether buying Wockhardt would make sense.
AstraZeneca didn't just fan the flames of U.K. politicial opposition to fend off Pfizer's $117 billion takeover attempt earlier this year. The British drugmaker also took its lobbying to Washington.
The flurry of meetings and phone calls between Schwan and Welch are spelled out in an SEC document InterMune filed late last week.
With rampant speculation that Pfizer might renew its effort to buy AstraZeneca, one might assume the takeover target's CEO, Pascal Soriot, would be locked up in meetings, devising a strategy for fending off the latest offer. Not so. Instead Soriot has been hobnobbing at the European Society of Cardiology congress in Barcelona, doing his best to demonstrate that AstraZeneca can thrive as an independent company.