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CRUCELL : Pfizer pas un obstacle

23 janv. 200922:38

LONDON (Reuters) june 23 2009 - Merger talks between Pfizer and Wyeth need not derail plans by Wyeth to buy Dutch vaccine maker Crucell, sources familiar with the situation said on Friday.

Shares in Crucell fell 9 percent by 1600 GMT on fears that Pfizer's discussions with Wyeth to buy its smaller rival for $60 billion or more could scupper ongoing Wyeth-Crucell negotiations.

Sources told Reuters, however, that Wyeth had been pursuing both avenues in parallel and buying the much smaller Dutch group should not present an obstacle to any eventual mega-merger.

"They (Wyeth) don't view the deals as mutually exclusive," said one person. "At the same time, Pfizer has also been trying to build up its vaccines profile."

A second source said Wyeth had been talking to both Pfizer and Crucell in recent months.

Crucell -- one of the world's few remaining independent vaccine makers -- announced on January 7 it was in friendly merger discussions with Wyeth.

Wyeth itself is one of the world's most prominent vaccine makers, whose products include the blockbuster Prevnar vaccine to protect infants and young children from infections with pneumococcal bacteria.

Combining the two companies is seen making good strategic sense and Crucell's market capitalization of around 1.1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) makes it a manageable buy for Wyeth.

RBS analyst Mutlu Gundogan agreed news of talks between Pfizer and Wyeth should not be a deal breaker and advised investors to buy Crucell shares on weakness.

"Crucell would complement both Wyeth on a standalone basis and Wyeth in a combination with Pfizer," he said in a research note.

"We believe that Pfizer would not only be interested in potential cost synergies of the two big pharma names, but also in Wyeth's successful biotech/vaccines franchise. Given Crucell's biotech/vaccine profile we believe it would complement Wyeth in both scenarios."

Crucell in November posted its first-ever quarterly profit, boosted by sales of its vaccines and cost savings, and raised its 2008 sales outlook.

The Dutch company's sales have been fueled by strong growth in its pediatric vaccines, especially Quinvaxem, a vaccine cocktail for the childhood diseases diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough and hepatitis B.

2 réponses

  • 26 janvier 200911:03

    Wyeth : renonce à Crucell

    lun 26 jan, 10h56

    La Société biotech néerlandaise Crucell (Amsterdam: CRU.AS - actualité) a annoncé ce jour que le Groupe pharmaceutique Américain Wyeth (NYSE: WYE - actualité) a renoncé à son acquisition. Le Groupe américain aurait ainsi mis fin aux discussions concernant un éventuel rapprochement des deux sociétés.

  • 27 janvier 200917:16

    Dommage, je pensais que d'autres majors (SANOFI,...) étaient aussi intéressés par crucell... Patience

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