Mallesons is acting as Australian and
legal advisors for Wyeth on its merger with Pfizer, announced 26 January 2009. The deal is being touted in the New Zealand media as one of the largest pharmaceutical deals in more than a decade. US
Pfizer is the current patent holder of the $12 billion-a-year cholesterol-fighting drug Lipitor. The Lipitor patent is scheduled to expire in 2011, and the company faces a predicted revenue shortfall with anticipated competition in the market from cheaper generic brands.
The merger will bring Wyeth's valuable biotech expertise under the Pfizer umbrella, including products such as Enbrel, a biologic treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. Wyeth and Pfizer have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Pfizer will acquire Wyeth in a cash-and-stock transaction currently valued at $US68 billion ($101 billion). The boards of directors of both companies have approved the merger.
The Mallesons team is being led by partners Katrina Rathie and Sharon Henrick. "The deal is significant for its dazzling $US68 billion-dollar value in this rather depressed market," said Rathie.
"It shows confidence in 'big-pharma' and the consolidation demonstrates the value of intellectual property rights, research and development, innovation pipeline, know how and consumer brands in the all important healthcare market," said Rathie.
Wyeth and its animal health division,