MaxMarioni
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Relating to AZN.L

Hikma pharmaceuticals (HIK:LN) was the best performing stock at the end of last week, experiencing a rise of 4.19% on Friday. This means the stock is now valued at 2,165p. The stock, which debuted on the FTSE 100 only last year, rose on the back of its earnings announcement for the first half of 2016. The healthcare company reported that its revenue rose by 24% to $882 million, or 28% in constant currency terms. (Read more)

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Shire PLC, the Dublin-based pharmaceutical company at the centre of the controversial merger with Astrazeneca which fell through earlier this year, has announced its 2016 quarterly results which beat analysts' estimates. Pharmaceuticals have grown more and more appealing as prospective equity investments for investors given the growth potential of healthcare products driven by profound global demographic shifts. Sales in the multibillion-dollar global healthcare sector grew by 9.5% in 2015, particularly in emerging markets. (Read more)

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Big pharma seems to have been gripped by merger mania, starting from this month's botched merger between US giant Pfizer and Dublin-based Allergan. The value of mergers in the healthcare sector since 2014 amounted to more than $650 billion, accounting for 14% of global M&A activity worldwide. Now it's the turn of Astrazeneca (AZN:LN), which contends with GlaxoSmithKline the title of biggest British pharmaceutical company. The Cambridge-based healthcare conglomerate is reportedly considering a takeover of Medivation, a US-based drug manufacturer which specialises in cancer treatments. The offer is supposed to be around the £7 billion mark, and would bring Medivation's best-selling cancer cures within Astrazeneca's stable, at a time when its patent on key cancer drug Crestor is expected to expire. This would entail a loss of exclusivity to its formula, with is set to hit the company hard. Astrazeneca is not a company renowned for M&A, having shied away from market takeovers in the past, however lately it has been more active on that front. The Cambridge company has been already the object of merger speculation with Pfizer itself, and last year bought a 55% stake in Acerta Pharma, another pharma company specialising in oncology. Medivation, meanwhile, has recently rebuffed a hostile takeover bid from French company Sanofi. (Read more)

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