Published in In Vivo, November 2020
Authors: Dr. Oded Ben-Joseph and Dr. Mykel Robble
Transactional activity – mergers, acquisitions and alliances – is an important tool that allows big pharma companies to maintain a competitive edge, ensure a healthy pipeline and reduce developmental risk by allocating resources towards promising candidates. Importantly, these transactions allow large companies to access innovation, typically provided by smaller entrepreneurial players. For investors in the target companies, the prospect of an acquisition or partnership represents an attractive exit window with substantial returns and far increased likelihood that candidate therapeutics reach patients. There are innumerable benefits of early partnerships for earlier stage target companies. Beyond providing a flow of cash, partnership transactions enable rapid discovery, development and scale-up, access to knowledge and expertise, essential resources, third-party validation and credibility and overall risk mitigation.
Understanding the rationale behind these transactions and the intended strategic direction of acquirers is key for CEOs when considering how to position their companies in a market-aligned manner. To that effect, Outcome Capital analyzed transactional activity by the largest biopharmaceutical companies in the three-and-a-half-year period between January 2017 and June 2020. Our analysis describes the type and frequency of acquisitions and collaborations in the biopharmaceutical industry and reveals sectors and stages of development in which transactional activity in concentrated.
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