Fri, Aug. 26, 9:42 AM
- Major international seed companies Monsanto (NYSE:MON), Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY), Dow Chemical (NYSE:DOW), DuPont (NYSE:DD) and Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) form an alliance to oppose the Indian government's proposal that would force them to share their genetically modified crop technology with local players.
- A Bayer exec says no one would invest in research if the proposed introduction of compulsory licensing - which would force a company to share its intellectual property upon government request - is implemented.
- The show of solidarity comes after MON, which pioneered the use of GM cotton in India, withdrew an application for its next-generation product from the approvals process on concerns over the security of its intellectual property.
Fri, Aug. 26, 7:26 AM
- Bayer AG (OTCPK:BAYRY) upgraded to Buy from Neutral by Citigroup.
- Allscripts (NASDAQ:MDRX) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform by Leerink Swann. Price target raised to $17 (32% upside) from $16.
- Healthways (NASDAQ:HWAY) upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight by Barclays. Price target raised to $27 (10% upside) from $12.
- Cardiovascular Systems (NASDAQ:CSII) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform by Leerink Swann. Price target is $30 (26% upside).
- Allergan plc (NYSE:AGN) upgraded to Buy from Neutral by Mizuho Securities. Price target raised to $318 (35% upside) from $248.
- Healthways (HWay) downgraded to Sell from Neutral by UBS. Price target raised to $22.50 (8% downside risk) from $19.
- ResMed (NYSE:RMD) downgraded to Underperform from Hold by Jefferies. Price target lowered to $58 (15% downside risk) from $60.
- Relypsa (NASDAQ:RLYP) downgraded to Hold from Buy by Stifel Nicolaus. Price target is $32 (0% upside).
- Portola Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:PTLA) downgraded to Neutral from Buy by Citigroup. Price target lowered to $24 (21% upside) from $40.
- Juniper Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:JNP) downgraded to Neutral from Buy by H.C. Wainwright. Price target is $6.75 (17% upside).
Tue, Aug. 23, 7:52 AM
- Negotiations between Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) and Monsanto (NYSE:MON) are advancing toward a merger deal after making progress on issues such as the purchase price and termination fee, Bloomberg reports.
- Bayer CEO Werner Baumann and MON CEO Hugh Grant have engaged in a series of constructive meetings in recent weeks and could reach an agreement in the next two weeks, according to the report.
- MON +3.9% premarket.
Fri, Aug. 19, 7:34 AM
- Casebia Therapeutics, the joint venture between Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) and gene editing firm CRISPR Therapeutics, will operate out of Cambridge, MA. The site will house 80 employees, mostly in R&D. Dr. Axel Bouchon will lead as interim CEO.
- The JV was announced in December 2015. Bayer will contribute at least $300M to develop CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing technology to treat a range of disorders in the blood, cardiovascular area and eyes. Bayer also acquired a majority stake in CRISPR for $35M.
- Bayer closed a separate development deal in May with privately held ERS Genomics for gain access to its CRISPR/Cas9 patents for certain applications.
- One of the founders of CRISPR Therapeutics was CRISPR/Cas9 discoverer Dr. Emmanuelle Charpentier. CRISPR inked a $105M licensing deal with Vertex Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:VRTX) in October 2015 that will enable Vertex to discover its own drug targets.
- The other discoverer of CRISPR/Cas9, Dr. Jennifer Doudna, founded Caribou Biosciences, based in Berkeley, CA. Relatively recent IPO Intellia Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NTLA), also based in Cambridge, MA, was spun out of Caribou to specifically develop drugs based on the much-hyped technology.
- The other CRISPR/Cas9 player, based in Cambridge, MA as well, is Editas Medicine (NASDAQ:EDIT), founded by an MIT-Harvard group that is currently in litigation with the Berkeley group over ownership of the CRISPR/Cas9 patents.
- CRISPR-Cas9 is the "next big thing" in biotech because of its unprecedented precision in editing DNA. CRISPR, the acronym for "clustered, regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats," uses RNA to guide the molecular scissors, the Cas9 enzyme, to a specific DNA sequence where it makes a specific cut in the DNA and triggers the cell's DNA repair machinery to address the genetic defect.
- Previously: Bayer strengthens position with gene editing technology with patent license deal (May 17)
Wed, Aug. 17, 11:00 AM| Wed, Aug. 17, 11:00 AM | 12 Comments
Tue, Aug. 16, 11:27 AM
- Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) is considering making a hostile bid for Monsanto (MON +0.9%) after the next few weeks show whether the two sides can reach a deal, Handelsblatt reports, citing sources close to Bayer's negotiating team.
- If a friendly deal fails to materialize, Bayer is prepared to appeal directly to MON shareholders, over the heads of MON's board, according to the report, which cites sources close to the company.
- MON rejected Bayer's last offer that valued the company at ~$64B, and some observers expect CEO Hugh Grant to reject any offer of less than $67B-$69B.
Thu, Aug. 11, 1:06 PM
- Micro cap Nymox Pharmaceutical (NYMX +31.4%) perks up on more than a 12x surge in volume in response to its announcement that it expects to file a marketing application (presumably in the U.S.) within the next two quarters seeking approval of fexapotide for the treatment of men with an enlarged prostate, called benign prostate hyperplasia or BPH. In addition, the company says it does not envision needing more cash for the pre-marketing development of fexapotide (it will need new capital for commercialization, though). It intends to partner with a larger company once fexapotide is approved, provided satisfactory terms can be agreed upon.
- Fexapotide is administered directly into the prostate via a transrectal injection that does not require anesthesia or sedation. Results from long-term studies (seven years of follow-up) showed a prostate cancer incidence rate of only 1.3% in men treated with fexapotide compared to ~23% in the general population and ~20% in men treated with PDE5 inhibitors for erectile dysfunction [Pfizer's (NYSE:PFE) Viagra, Eli Lilly's (NYSE:LLY) Cialis, Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) and GlaxoSmithKline's (NYSE:GSK) Levitra].
- Previously: Nymox's lead product candidate reduces incidence of prostate cancer in long-term study; shares up 29% (June 22)
Thu, Aug. 4, 12:26 PM
- Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY -0.1%) is reviewing Monsanto's (MON +1.8%) financial accounts as part of a due diligence process that could pave the way for it to raise its $55B takeover offer, Bloomberg reports.
- Bayer has signed confidentiality agreements to conduct due diligence, a process that is expected to last a few more weeks, as it weighs the size and timing of a new bid, according to the report.
- MON last month rejected Bayer’s improved $125/share offer, describing it as “financially inadequate” and leaving the German company to decide whether to raise its bid a second time.
Thu, Jul. 28, 11:32 AM
- Long-term follow-up data from a 16-subject Phase 1/2 clinical trial assessing Roche's (OTCQX:RHHBY) investigational biologic emicizumab in patients with severe hemophilia A show encouraging safety and prophylactic efficacy regardless of the presence of factor VIII inhibitors. The results were presented at the World Federation of Hemophilia 2016 World Congress in Orlando, FL.
- The data show patients who received once-weekly subcutaneous injections of either 0.3,1.0 or 3.0 mg/kg/week of emicizumab with median follow-up periods of 32.6 months, 27.0 months and 21.4 months, respectively, experienced a sustained decrease of 95% in annualized bleeding rate (ABR), irrespective of their inhibitor status and prior treatment regimen. The ABRs for the three cohorts were 1.4, 0.2 and 0.0, respectively.
- The product candidate's safety profile was consistent with what was previously reported in the Phase 1 study. No thromboembolic (blood clot that breaks loose and clogs another vessel) adverse events or clinically significant laboratory abnormalities were observed.
- Emicizumab is an bispecific antibody engineered to bind to both factors IXa and X, replacing the function of the missing factor VIII, thereby improving clotting function and preventing spontaneous bleeding. It was created by Chugai Pharmaceutical Co. and is being co-developed by Roche. Future clinical trials will explore less frequent dosing schedules.
- Related tickers: (OTC:BIOVF)(NASDAQ:BIIB)(BXLT)(OTCPK:BAYRY)(NASDAQ:OPK)(NYSE:SNY)(NASDAQ:ALNY)(NASDAQ:SGMO)(NASDAQ:CBIO)(NASDAQ:BMRN)
Wed, Jul. 27, 1:56 PM
- BASF (OTCQX:BASFY) and Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) cut the outlook for their agrochemicals businesses, which analysts say could add to the urgency for global consolidation that has swept the industry.
- Both German companies reported Q2 earnings today that were hurt by lower demand for the herbicides and pesticides made by their crop sciences divisions, as a global slump in commodities prices hurts farmers’ incomes.
- “The agriculture market has gotten more difficult and that can certainly be a trigger for market consolidation," says NordLB analyst Thorsten Strauss, adding that cheap financing conditions also play a role.
- Bayer says full-year profit for its agrochemicals division likely will decline by a low-single-digit percentage, instead of rising as it had previously projected.
- Monsanto’s (NYSE:MON) negotiating position in Bayer's takeover offer has not become stronger, according to Commerzbank's Daniel Wendorff, noting that Bayer can still argue that the weak market environment in crop science will persist.
Wed, Jul. 27, 7:04 AM
- Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) Q2 results (€M): Total Revenues: 12,003 (-1.4%); Pharmaceuticals: 3,890 (+5.5%); Consumer Health: 1,590 (-2.3%); Crop Science: 2,636 (-4.5%); Animal Health: 428 (-0.5%); Covestro: 3,185 (-6.6%).
- Net Income: 1,380 (+18.6%); EPS: 1.67 (+19.3%); CF Ops: 1,982 (+1.2%).
- Key Pharmaceutical Product Sales: Xarelto: 703 (+28.1%); Eylea: 418 (+38.9%); Kogenate/Kovaltry: 280 (-6.4%); Mirena product family: 258 (-4.4%); Nexavar: 221 (-4.3%).
- 2016 Guidance: Total Revenues: €46B - 47B from >€47B; Life Sciences: ~€35B; Pharmaceuticals: >€16B from ~€16B; Consumer Health: ~€6B from >€6B; Crop Science: flat vs. 2015 from low-single-digit increase; Animal Health: slightly above 2015; Covestro: sales decline.
Wed, Jul. 20, 8:57 AM
- One of Bayer's (OTCPK:BAYRY) top 20 shareholders says it may make sense to launch a hostile takeover bid for Monsanto (NYSE:MON) after the U.S. company rejected a sweetened $125/share offer yesterday.
- "Such a move would be seen as hostile but could put pressure on Monsanto's management to grant Bayer access to its books," Markus Manns of Union Investment tells WSJ; Union is Bayer's 14th largest investor with a 0.7% stake.
- Manns says Bayer has room to improve its offer to a maximum of $135/share, but a higher number would make an acquisition too much of a financial risk; he does not agree with fellow investor Henderson Global Investors, which is urging Bayer to put the deal to a shareholder vote.
Tue, Jul. 19, 7:57 AM
- Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) investor Henderson Global Investors is demanding a vote on the company's $64B-plus proposed takeover of Monsanto (NYSE:MON), marking the strongest opposition from the investor base against the deal.
- Henderson, one of Bayer's 20 largest investors with a 0.7% stake, says the bid for MON represents "a major departure from a strategy of focus and integration of existing acquisitions" that Bayer had consistently communicated to the market for a number of years.
- Henderson also says the deal terms reflect a very high valuation multiple and the deal could constrain investment in the pharma division.
- Bayer has repeatedly said it does not need shareholder approval for the deal, which would make any dissenting move more complicated.
Mon, Jul. 18, 5:19 PM
- Monsanto (NYSE:MON) is negotiating terms on a confidentiality agreement with Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) that would allow extensive due diligence, a move that may indicate some progress as a result of Bayer's latest takeover offer, Reuters reports.
- Access to confidential information has been a major sticking point in Bayer's negotiations with MON ever since it extended its first takeover offer in May.
- MON would still require Bayer to raise its offer further in order to agree to a sale, according to the report.
- Bayer last week improved its offer to $125/share in cash from $122 and offered a $1.5B reverse antitrust breakup fee.
Mon, Jul. 18, 11:14 AM
- Monsanto (MON +0.2%) will not sell itself for less than $130/share, which concerns Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY -0.7%) investors who worry about the price that could be needed to get the deal done, Handelsblatt reported overnight.
- Last week, Bayer sweetened its offer to $125, which MON says it is evaluating after rejecting the company’s $122 offer in May.
- Analyst Brett Wong at Piper Jaffray says a price closer to $140 is needed to consummate the deal; portfolio manager Jim Russell of Bahl & Gaynor agrees, saying Bayer needs to come back at least once more with a higher price.
Fri, Jul. 15, 5:14 AM
- Even though Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) has sweetened the pot in its attempt to win Monsanto (NYSE:MON), analysts suggest the company is likely to reject the roughly $65B offer and could pursue other transactions such as combining with BASF's (OTCQX:BASFY) agro-chemicals unit.
- "I don't think they believe selling for $125 (per share) today is in the best interests of shareholders... and I do believe they are still considering being a consolidator and not a consolidee," said Chris Kapsch, analyst at BB&T Capital Markets.
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, nutrition and high-tech materials. At the same time Bayer creates value through innovation, growth and improved earning power. Bayer HealthCare AG researches, develops, manufactures and markets innovative products... More
Sector: Industrial Goods
Industry: Chemicals - Major Diversified