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Pharmaceuticals. (Industry Watch).

Pharmaceuticals: Lower company earnings could set off a new wave of mergers and acquisitions in the pharmaceutical industry. Patent expirations, fewer new drugs on the market, and moves to lower or stabilize pricing from government bodies have put pressure on pharmaceutical earnings. Bristol-Myers Squibb, Merck and Eli Lilly are all expected to report disappointing results for this year. Bristol-Myers is widely considered the most likely takeover target. Companies considering the possible acquisition include Novartis, Pharmacia, GlaxoSmithKline and Wyeth. More merger and acquisitions could also be on the way for biotech companies with Celltech topping the list of potential acquisitions. But any merger or acquisition among big pharma will have to overcome a number of potential problems. The deals could face antitrust regulations due to the chances that one company will dominate a certain category of therapeutics. Investor sentiment, concerns about larger research operations, thin product pipelines among possible acquisition targets, and issues involving personnel could also deter such deals.

Source: Financial Times
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Publication:Instrument Business Outlook
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 15, 2002
Words:162
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