Updated on 12 June 2013
Dr Kotaro Yoshida, senior research analyst, BioPharm Insight, US
Compared to 2011, global pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors suffered a setback in the number of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) deals, including reverse mergers, in 2012. Chair of the Healthcare Team at IMAP, an M&A advisory firm, Mr Christoph Bieri acknowledges this downturn in a recent report, and cites the European fiscal crisis and "ObamaCare," among other reasons, for limiting big pharma's growth prospects. "Since most big and mid-sized pharma players have been using M&A to fuel growth for a long time, good targets are scarce and hard to come by," says Bieri.
Other interesting facts and figures:
• What were the top 20 global M&A transactions of 2012?
• What were the top 20 M&A deals in pharma and biotech sector in 2012?
A look at individual Asian markets may reveal little change between 2011 and 2012, but markets like China and Japan have recorded marginally higher number of deals completed in 2012 compared to the year before. In January 2012 itself, in addition to Gilead Sciences' completing its purchase of Pharmasset for $11.2 billion, three of the largest Asian healthcare M&A agreements were signed and also, the formerly-known Watson Pharmaceuticals (now Actavis) announced its acquisition of Ascent Pharmahealth, an Australian generic pharmaceutical company focused mainly on dermatology, for $395 million. The following week, Nagase & Co. completed its $910 million acquisition of Hayashibara, a Japanese food and pharmaceutical ingredient maker, among other businesses.
In March 2012, BioPharm Insight reported on a likely rise in China healthcare M&A deals through the year, partly due to the government's 12th Five-Year Plan, which broadly set about to support large groups and enterprises in order to improve its national healthcare systems, particularly in under served and rural areas.