Breakingviews

Pfizer’s pricey non-split may only defer problem

September 26, 2016

After years of study costing $600 mln, the drugmaker says it won't break itself up. Boss Ian Read always seemed keener on acquisitions. It's true the process helped close a conglomerate discount. But Pfizer's sprawl and tendency to overpay means the gap may soon reappear.

Cox: Pfizer death-row move serves investors, too

By Rob Cox
May 16, 2016

The drugmaker best known for trying to dodge taxes and cure erectile dysfunction will restrict use of its compounds in executions. A bit like Google’s doing with payday lenders or CVS did with tobacco, it’s a moral stance made easier by ultimately reducing risk for shareholders.

Pfizer’s $5.2 bln Anacor bid dodges bigger issue

May 16, 2016

The drug giant may have bagged a good deal for the maker of eczema and toenail fungus remedies – assuming Anacor gets all needed approvals and sales soar. Bolt-on acquisitions can be helpful, but the important question for $200 bln Pfizer remains: will boss Ian Read break it up?

Pfizer mulls actually having an M&A strategy

May 5, 2016

The $205 bln drug giant’s last two huge acquisition attempts failed. Pfizer could yet try another merger to cut its tax rate, it could enter a potentially heated auction for $10 bln biotech Medivation, or it could split up. Dealmaking success depends on having clearer goals.

from Viewsroom:

Viewsroom: M&A overdose, Panama papers, Disney demise

April 8, 2016

The Pfizer-Allergan deal comes to a screeching halt, while a document dump exposes the elite's offshore tax finagling. Plus: An heir apparent loses the keys to the Magic Kingdom.

Abandoned Pfizer deal leaves all sides tainted

April 6, 2016

The U.S. Treasury looks bad for changing the rules to kill the $160 bln merger with Allergan. Lawmakers’ inaction encouraged such tax-driven transactions. But Pfizer and CEO Ian Read bear the most responsibility for wasting time and resources pushing an overpriced, risky deal.

Delay in Pfizer split is material adverse event

November 24, 2015

The $160 bln acquisition of Allergan will cut taxes and add solid assets, but it’s also causing Pfizer to defer until 2018 a decision on splitting up. Even though the company’s disposals have added greater value than acquisitions, CEO Ian Read seems more eager to bulk up.

Pfizer-Allergan gets no support from scaredy arbs

November 24, 2015

The drugmakers’ shares are trading far below the prices implied by Pfizer’s all-stock offer - as if the merger were going to create no value. Arbitrageurs who used to exploit such gaps have little taste for massive deals – especially ones that have politicians on the warpath.

Pfizer’s $150 bln plan is high-risk, low-benefit

November 19, 2015

Buying Allergan would give the drug giant a low-tax domicile in Ireland and one good drug, Botox. At the reported price, Allergan would accrue nearly all of the obvious upside. Pfizer would be left with a possible integration hangover – and tax savings that might disappear.

Pfizer may overdose on quick and complex deals

October 29, 2015

The drug giant is in talks to buy Allergan and seems likely to split the merged firm. It is moving briskly to take advantage of low share prices and tax benefits that could vanish with a new Congress. Speed can prompt missteps, though, as the pharma giant knows only too well.