M&A Carousel Turns Faster as Deals Set New Records

30.07.2015 -

July this year began with the highest-ever value of M&A transactions announced in any July since 2008, says Mergermarket, an independent Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) intelligence service. The deals valued at $323.8 billion were worth 20.9% more than in July 2014.

On average, the monthly value of M&A during 2015 has been $ 98.8 billion, Mergermarkt says. If M&A continues at this pace, it says the year will top 2014’s post-crisis high and even be on the verge of eclipsing the 2007’s peak of $ 3.7 trillion.

Five of this year’s global top deals have made it into the top 20 chart. The sixth largest is the plan by Israeli generics giant Teva to acquire the generics activities of Allergan for $40.5 billion.

Pharma deals in particular are chasing each other as the M&A carousel turns ever faster. In several cases, they are like ripples in a brook – one is touched off by another.

In the latest transaction, Allergan, the newly merged US pharmaceutical group joining Allergan and Actavis, has agreed to hand over its generics arm to Teva. With the ink still drying, Allergan CEO Brent Saunders has already told news media he may seek another large, “transformational” merger.

The new Allergan is itself the result of a takeover of the Botox manufacturer of the same name by Ireland-domiciled Actavis earlier this year. Actavis is a former US company that has relocated for tax reasons.

With the Allergan coup, the Israeli drugmaker now plans to abandon its bitterly opposed quest to acquire Netherlands-based generics maker Mylan, another “exiled” US drugmaker.

Mylan meanwhile has stepped up its pursuit of Perrigo, and this week received regulatory approval from the European Commission to move ahead with the planned purchase for which it has offered $28.9 billion in stock and cash.

In a coup of its own, Perrigo announced in November of last year that it planned to acquire Belgium's Omega Pharma for €2.48 billion ($2.74 billion) excluding debt.