Pfizer will pay $11.6 billion to buy migraine pill maker Biohaven Pharmaceutical, marking the biggest deal by the cash-rich drugmaker since 2016 to beef up its portfolio ahead of patent losses for some cancer drugs.
The deal, announced on Tuesday, will give Pfizer access to Biohaven’s approved rimegepant, a potential blockbuster that belong to a class of migraine treatments known as calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) inhibitors.
Flush with about $32 billion in cash on hand after its success with Covid-19 drugs, Pfizer has been looking to add treatments as patents for its top-selling drugs like blood thinner Eliquis near expiration.
The company also expects sales of its Covid-19 vaccines to drop from last year’s highs. “Investors will like this deal. Given Pfizer’s strong balance sheet, this is still a small acquisition and we would expect more such deals,” Wells Fargo analyst Mohit Bansal said in a note.
The Biohaven deal is the largest since Pfizer’s $14 billion purchase of cancer drugmaker Medivation in 2016.
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