Bristol-Myers-Squibb invests $ 13 billion to afford cardiology biotech



Posted on Oct 5, 2020 at 6:19 PMUpdated Oct 5, 2020 6:34 PM

We expected a Bristol-Myers-Squibb (BMS) movement, still in search of acquisitions, but not necessarily in cardiology. The American group announced on Monday the acquisition of MyoKardia for $ 13.1 billion, with a premium of some 60% on the last share price. It is true that it is a therapeutic area which was familiar to him in the past, before it gradually emerges from it during the 2000s. Today, despite everything, he has a blockbuster in this area. , Eliquis, an anticoagulant the benefits of which he shares with Pfizer.

Phase III successful

This product, whose sales could well exceed $ 8 billion in revenue this year, should be able to keep generic competition at bay until 2026, but it has no real successor so far. . MyoKardia’s main asset, Mavacamten, has successfully completed a Phase III clinical study against hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (a cause of heart failure) and may be marketed as of the first trimester of next year. BMS intends to find other applications for it

From 2011 onwards, BMS had focused almost entirely on oncology, gradually divesting all of its assets outside the domain, with sales contracting to $ 15.9 billion in 2014, making it a potential prey. The arrival of Giovanni Caforio at the head of the company in 2015 marked the return of growth, despite the disappointments of the oncology blockbuster Opdivo (more than $ 7 billion) supplanted by Merck’s Keytruda.

Loss of patents

BMS then proceeded by external growth, buying, in January 2019, Celgene, a specialist in blood cancers for 74 billion dollars. But Revlimid ($ 10.2 billion in 2019), Celgene’s flagship product, is threatened by the loss of its patents in March 2022. It cannot therefore constitute a growth driver for long. As for Celgene’s first cell therapy, it has been waiting for the green light from the American authorities for a year.

Oncology, if it is a booming field, is also one of the therapeutic areas where the chances of success are among the lowest. And the environment is ultra-competitive. BMS executives considered diversification to be welcome.

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