Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Pfizer's Brilliant Move to Nab Denosumab [With Poll Results]

People, people, people...why so angry? Apparently only 6% of you think the Pfizer-Wyeth deal is good for both companies. Just over 21% think it's a good deal for Pfizer only.

That's right, our snap poll has reached the 48th hour and is now closed. You can view the results here. Nearly 52% of about 300 votes cast say that the deal is a bad deal all around.

But let's put everything in the near-term aside for a second and let's think a little further down the road. The Wyeth acquisition puts Pfizer in the driver seat to grab the "potential blockbuster" (how many times have you heard that phrase?) osteoporosis drug denosumab from Amgen.

Hear us out. Remember, Wyeth and Amgen are partners on the anti-inflammatory biologic Enbrel (only a $3.8 billion dollar product). Amgen has said that there is absolutely no change to the relationship other than Pfizer will step into Wyeth's shoes.

So how do we go from there to Pfizer getting denosumab? Well, it's a leap, we'll admit. However, Amgen has said it may partner with another company to market and sell denosumab (assuming it gets approved; the application has been submitted to FDA). Our bet is, if they do partner, it will be with Pfizer. Who will have more sales experience and geographic reach than their Enbrel-partner Pfizer-Wyeth/Pfwyeth/Wyzer/Wy-Pfi?

That theoretical partnership would likely lock in Pfizer as the only viable buyer for Amgen when you take in ability to finance the deal, partnership exclusivity, scale, and cash.

What's that you say? Pfizer couldn't buy a company the size of Amgen after taking on Wyeth? We're not buying it. All arguments about whether or not that's smart strategy or whether it creates or destroys shareholder value aside, if anything, Pfizer has proven that it can continually buy and integrate large cap health companies.

What do you think? Are we crazy? We'd love to hear your comments but be gentle.

image from flickr user subkomandante used under a creative commons license


Anonymous said...

Thanks. I've been wondering how so many websites have ignored Amgen when they mention Enbrel in the Wy-Pfi deal...

Anonymous said...

While I would agree that Pfizer has shown it can buy other companies, I have yet to any evidence that Pfizer can successfully integrate other companies to add value to their shareholders. I do not see why people think Pfizer will now be able to integrate Wyeth successfully to create any value (beyond pillaging the pipeline). We can only hope they leave Amgen alone.

Anonymous said...

Assuming absorption into the Pfizer collective is the last thing the smart individualistic people at Amgen intend to let happen, then surely logic and history suggests Pfizer would be their last choice of partner for a key asset?