Amgen All Set to Acquire Horizon Therapeutics in a Whopping USD 27.8 Billion Deal

After the announcement of the Federal Trade Commission on Friday, the most awaited biotech deal from 2022 will now proceed without obstacles. The deal consists of California-based pharma giant Amgen, acquiring Irish biotech Horizon Therapeutics, for a massive amount of USD 27.8 billion. 


As Amgen looked forward to acquiring Horizon Pharmaceuticals in 2022, the FTC filed a lawsuit against the buyout in May 2023. FTC’s primary concern was to avoid the potential favouring by Amgen towards some of Horizon’s particular products and rebating their own products, including thyroid eye disease (TED) and chronic refractory gout (CRG) products Tepezza and Krystexxa, such as Enbrel, used in the treatment of various autoimmune diseases. FTC said that this acquisition rebate might disable the rivals of Tepezza from even entering the market. However, Amgen denied the concern and informed the FTC that they have no intentions of bundling Tepezza or Krystexxa with their own products. Amgen and the attorney general of California, Illinois, Minnesota, New York, Washington, and Wisconsin are also to be dismissed.


FTC further suspended the lawsuit temporarily in the hope of getting the dispute settled with the parties involved outside the court as well. On August 25, Reuters updated its published report where this suspension was displayed as a potential to resolve this dispute.


Moreover, Amgen is not allowed to acquire the possession of any product that has been FDA-sanctioned or any business interests acing the selling or manufacturing of biosimilars, or therapeutic equivalents associated with treatments of thyroid eye disease or chronic refractory gout without approval from FTC. For pre-commercial products, Amgen is supposed to ask for pre-approval by 2032. All other agency requirements are valid for 15 years.


“Consolidation in the pharmaceutical industry has given companies the power and incentive to engage in exclusionary rebating practices, which can lead to sky-rocketing prices on essential medications,” said Henry Liu, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition, in a statement. “Today’s proposed resolution sends a clear signal that the FTC and its state partners will scrutinize pharmaceutical mergers that enable such practices and defend patients and competition in this vital marketplace.”


After the big announcement of agreement of the parties involved in the case, Andrew Pannu, a biotech executive, currently working on a stealth startup with a background in investment banking, private equity, and corporate development, said that this case exhibits strict scrutinization by the FTC under the Biden administration against rebating practices by major payers in the industry by compromising the transparency and drug practices.


“Today’s action — the FTC’s first challenge to a pharmaceutical merger in recent memory — sends a clear signal to the market: The FTC won’t hesitate to challenge mergers that enable pharmaceutical conglomerates to entrench their monopolies at the expense of consumers and fair competition,” FTC Bureau of Competition Director Holly Vedova said in a statement at the time.


*At Expert Market Research, we strive to always give you current and accurate information. The numbers depicted in the description are indicative and may differ from the actual numbers in the final EMR report.

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