Diane's Feed
Jun 22, 2015

Anthem confident, but experts see antitrust hurdles to Cigna deal

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. health insurer Anthem Inc (ANTM.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) on Monday dismissed concerns that buying smaller competitor Cigna Corp (CI.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) would be considered anti-competitive, even as antitrust experts said the combination would earn regulatory scrutiny.

Any merger could require asset sales and would be complicated by other potential deals in the U.S. healthcare industry, expected to see rapid consolidation. Insurers have emerged from years of changes in health insurance under President Barack Obama’s national healthcare reform law and are seeking now to use scale to trim administrative costs and negotiate lower prices with doctors in their networks.

Jun 8, 2015

Reynolds-Lorillard merger clears final hurdle, judge okays brand transfer

By Diane Bartz

(Reuters) – Reynolds American Inc on Monday cleared
the final hurdle for its roughly $27.4 billion purchase of
smaller rival Lorillard Inc as a federal judge approved
its request to sell several cigarette brands.

The companies expect to close on June 12, they said in a
press release.

U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler in Washington, D.C.
granted an unopposed motion allowing the transfer of the Kool,
Maverick, Salem and Winston brands to Imperial Tobacco Group Plc

Jun 3, 2015

Novartis tries to get U.S. ban lifted on sale of Neupogen copycat

WASHINGTON, June 3 (Reuters) – Novartis AG unit
Sandoz asked a U.S. appeals court on Wednesday to lift a
preliminary injunction barring it from selling its biosimilar
Zarxio, a cheaper version of a drug that fends off infections in
cancer patients.

In October, Amgen Inc, maker of the $1.2
billion-a-year drug Neupogen, sued Sandoz in district court in
San Francisco, saying Zarxio infringed the patent on Amgen’s
drug. The court refused to grant a preliminary injunction
barring the sale of Zarxio while the lawsuit continued, but in
May the injunction was granted by the U.S. Court of Appeals for
the Federal Circuit.

May 29, 2015

U.S. sues to block merger of Steris Corp, Synergy Health

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Trade Commission
filed a lawsuit on Friday aimed at stopping the $1.9 billion
merger of medical technology provider Steris Corp and
British sterilization services provider Synergy Health Plc
, according to the agency, which enforces antitrust law.

Synergy Health and Steris, both of which provide contract
sterilization services using radiation for medical devices, said
they would fight the FTC and that they were confident they would

May 28, 2015

Sysco defends US Foods deal from FTC, judge skeptical

By Diane Bartz

(Reuters) – Lawyers for Sysco Corp, the No. 1 U.S.
food distribution company, told a judge that competition from
regional rivals would prevent the company from raising prices if
it is allowed to buy US Foods Inc, the market’s No. 2 player.

The Federal Trade Commission sued in February to temporarily
stop Sysco’s $3.5 billion bid for US Foods while an internal FTC
judge heard the case. Closing arguments in a mini-trial for that
preliminary injunction wrapped up late Thursday.

May 28, 2015

U.S. settles ‘pay-for-delay’ fight with drugmaker Teva over Provigil

WASHINGTON, May 28 (Reuters) – U.S. antitrust regulators
have settled a long-running fight with Cephalon, now owned by
Teva Pharmaceuticals, over how it resolved a patent
infringement lawsuit tied to wakefulness drug Provigil, the
Federal Trade Commission said on Thursday.

As part of the settlement, Teva, which bought Cephalon in
2012, agreed to pay $1.2 billion to refund buyers who paid too
much for Provigil and to refrain from similar deals in the
future, the FTC said.

May 28, 2015

U.S. settles ‘pay for delay’ fight with drugmaker Cephalon

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. antitrust regulators have
settled a long-running fight with Cephalon, now owned by Teva
Pharmaceuticals, over how it resolved a patent
infringement lawsuit tied to wakefulness drug Provigil, the
Federal Trade Commission said on Thursday.

Cephalon had been accused by the FTC of illegally protecting
its monopoly on Provigil by paying generic drug makers to drop
their challenges to Cephalon’s patent.

May 26, 2015

Charter’s Time Warner Cable bid faces $2 billion regulatory question

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Time Warner Cable, entering into talks to be acquired by Charter Communications Inc just a month after regulators killed a proposed takeover by Comcast Corp’s, was determined not to get burned a second time.

It won such an insurance policy on Tuesday, when Charter included as part of its $56 billion takeover agreement a pledge to pay Time Warner Cable a $2 billion breakup fee if the deal goes south. Comcast, by contrast, had made no such pledge and was able to walk away scot-free when its bid collapsed.

May 26, 2015

Reynolds American wins U.S. antitrust approval to buy rival Lorillard

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Reynolds American Inc won
U.S. antitrust approval on Tuesday for its deal to buy smaller
rival Lorillard in a deal that would combine the No. 2
and No. 3 U.S. cigarette companies.

The Federal Trade Commission said it would allow the deal to
go forward in condition that the companies sell four cigarette
brands – Winston, Kool, Salem and Maverick. They will be
purchased by Imperial Tobacco Group PLC.

May 26, 2015

Charter’s $56 bln Time Warner Cable deal to face U.S. scrutiny

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON, May 26 (Reuters) – Charter
Communications Inc, seeking to remake the U.S. cable television
industry by acquiring larger rival Time Warner Cable Inc
for $56 billion, will try to skirt the regulatory obstacles that
helped sink Comcast Corp’s earlier bid for Time Warner

The combined company would control a big swath of the cable
and Internet markets, marking a huge step toward industry
consolidation, long advocated by cable pioneer John Malone,
Charter’s biggest shareholder.