Given that mega mergers coming out of the pharmaceutical and life sciences sector have dominated the corporate agenda for decades, it was fitting that an afternoon session of our inaugural Corporate and M&A Summit focused on transactional trends in this area. Chaired by Laura Anderson, co-chair of Bristows life sciences group, it gathered a collection of in-house experts from big pharma.
Responding to a question posed by Anderson as to whether the spate of significant deals in the sector will continue, Dr Sahar Shepperd, senior legal counsel at Johnson & Johnson, pointed to his company’s recent $30bn acquisition of Actelion as a sign the pipeline for M&A deals in the sector is healthy, along with the recent acquisition of Shire by Takeda. ‘That deal was about accessing Shire’s rare disease portfolio. If you bring in an entire portfolio of assets into the pipeline, you have obviously done the maths and are mindful of the fact that that will generate revenue for the next ten years or so.’