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Bristol-Myers Squibb to sell off Celgene's Otezla ahead of $74 billion merger

Published on 24/06/19 at 05:01pm

Bristol-Myers Squibb has agreed to sell off Celgene’s psoriasis treatment Otezla, to appease antitrust regulators.

BMS will divest one of Celgene’s most lucrative drugs as the two companies prepare for their $74 billion merger. Otezla generated $1.86 billion in sales last year and was previously seen as an important driver of future growth.

However, in light of discussions with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC), BMS will sell off the psoriasis drug as quickly as possible. BMS expects this date to be in late 2019 or early 2020.

The divestment comes as part of an agreement with the FTC. BMS said they agreed to the condition in order to ensure the company’s merger with Celgene closes “on a timely basis.” The merger comes as BMS hopes to achieve dominance in the field of cancer-immunotherapy.

BMS commented in a statement: “Bristol-Myers Squibb is committed to working with regulatory authorities around the world on the proposed combination with Celgene. The Company is focused on realizing the promise of the transaction, and is continuing to work to complete the transaction on a timely basis.”

“Bristol-Myers Squibb reaffirms the significant value creation opportunity of the acquisition of Celgene. Together with $2.5 billion of cost synergies, a compelling pipeline and a strong portfolio of marketed products, the Company continues to expect growth in sales and earnings through 2025.”

“The Company is continuing to develop its promising immunology pipeline asset, tyrosine kinase 2 (TYK2) inhibitor, in several autoimmune diseases, including psoriasis. Bristol-Myers Squibb looks forward to advancing its leadership in core areas of focus, including immunology, and delivering highly innovative medicines that bring meaningful benefits to patients as a combined company.”

Louis Goss

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