Pfizer’s M&A machine is unstoppable

The daily Irish Times published a long article about Pfizer and its appetite for large acquisitions. Pfizer is one of the most important employers in Ireland, having a workforce of approximately 3,500. One year ago it tried to acquire Allergan, with tax domicile in Ireland, for $150bn. The takeover would have allowed Pfizer to benefit from tax inversion and to move its headquarters to Ireland, which has a far more attractive tax regime than the US. The company would have become Irish for all legal purposes. Despite Pfizer has failed acquiring Allergan, it has completed important acquisitions, such as the dermatology product manufacturer Anacor for $5.2bn and the California-based Medivation - with a rich cancer treatment portfolio – for $14bn. Moreover, it had already integrated Hospira, acquired for $17bn few months before Anacor. Pfizer boasts one of the best pipelines in the big pharma, in spite of the recent setback due to cholesterol drug bococizumab, planned to be produced in the Irish facility of Grange Castle. Bococizumab was withdrawn from the pipeline after a Phase II trial. The new drug would have meant a production capacity expansion and 350 new jobs (1,250 during the expansion of the facilities) for Grange Castle. CEO Reid, however, said Pfizer will keep making efforts to further strengthen its pipeline both through internal R&D plans, and through bolt-on acquisitions. Finally, Reid has reiterated that Ireland remains important for Pfizer, thanks to its pro-business attitude (tax regime). In addition, it will become even more attractive following Brexit, since many companies and entities will relocate from London to Dublin – perhaps, as in the case of the European Medicines Agency. (Source The Irish Times)