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Big pharma's need to tap M&A for growth will persist in 2014, while dealmaking landscape becomes more competitive
Date:1/12/2014

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Big pharma stayed on the sidelines in the 2013 mergers and acquisitions (M&A) market despite a continuing need to close a revenue "growth gap" that is expected to reach US$100 billion by 2015. While pharma companies have more "firepower" - or capacity for conducting M&A deals - they now face the dual challenges of higher valuations for attractive assets and relatively less purchasing power when compared to competitors in big biotech and specialty pharma. These and other findings were released today in the 2014 issue of EY's Firepower and Growth Gap report, The shifting balance of firepower.

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"With strong shareholder returns and robust pipelines at a few companies, big pharma was largely absent from M&A in 2013," said Glen Giovannetti, EY's Global Life Sciences Leader. "As they face significant growth challenges ahead, pharma companies will need to become more acquisitive, but the growing strengths of big biotech and emerging pharma are leading to both increased competition for deals and more expensive targets."

Key findings highlighted in the report include:

  • Pharma's growth gap remains: The projected 2015 growth gap for big pharma - the additional revenue needed to keep pace with the overall drug market - remained essentially unchanged at US$100 billion. The inability of big pharma to close this growth gap was due to both a lack of significant M&A and slowing sales, with revised third-quarter guidance indicating that aggregate 2013 sales are expected to decline by about 1%.
  • Pharma's firepower increases: EY
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  • SOURCE EY
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