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Mega-deals mask a significant decline in M&A activity for pharma and medtech
The Vantage Half-Year Review 2019 summaries the most significant trends across pharma, medtech and biotech in the first half of 2019.
Bristol-Myers Squibb’s $74bn pending purchase of Celgene and Abbvie’s $63bn acquisition of Allergan have taken the headlines, positioning 2019 to be a record year for pharma M&A spend, while Verily’s $1bn round of funding in Q1 was the largest ever seen in the medtech.
However, these colossal deals are masking a substantial slowdown in the total number of M&A deals in both pharma and medtech, and pharma doubled down on this trend with a similar drop in licensing activity. Investors remain cautious due to potential US drug reforms and elsewhere the biotech boom appears to be over, except for a couple of isolated bubbles.