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MedPointe and Opportunities in Specialty Pharma: Speed is Expensive

Executive Summary

The notion of building up a new drug company with the unwanted, undersized products of ever-bigger Big Pharma is hardly new. But MedPointe, with its acquisition of Carter Wallace's medical products business, is aiming to build up a new firm faster and bigger than can be done simply by in-licensing.

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MedPointe's Private Dilemma

MedPointe was born via the leveraged buy-out of an old, private pharmaceutical company, Carter-Wallace. Accepting financial strictures was part of the deal; the company must remain profitable. This increases the challenge for the "founders," seasoned pharma execs intent on leveraging the infrastructure they overhauled, to created an in-licensing based marketing powerhouse. Beyond competing with bigger pharma marketers, management's challenge remains bringing in new assets affordably.

MedPointe's Private Dilemma

MedPointe was born via the leveraged buy-out of an old, private pharmaceutical company, Carter-Wallace. Accepting financial strictures was part of the deal; the company must remain profitable. This increases the challenge for the "founders," seasoned pharma execs intent on leveraging the infrastructure they overhauled, to created an in-licensing based marketing powerhouse. Beyond competing with bigger pharma marketers, management's challenge remains bringing in new assets affordably.

Shire: Too Big For Its Niches

When UK specialty pharmaceutical company Shire Pharmaceuticals announced its $4 billion all-share acquisition of Canada's BioChem Pharma in December, the markets punished it with a 16% drop in share price. But Shire is getting too big to acquire merely niche product opportunities.

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