Amarin Corporation's Stock Heats Up on Buyout Chatter

Will Amarin be the next biopharma acquisition?

George Budwell
George Budwell
Jan 10, 2019 at 1:15PM
Health Care

Check out the latest Amarin earnings call transcript.

What happened

Shares of Amarin Corporation (NASDAQ:AMRN) are up big for a second day in a row. While the biopharma's shares took flight yesterday as a result of an upbeat presentation at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare conference, this latest double-digit move higher is being sparked by an entirely different catalyst.

Specifically, Amarin's shares jumped by as much as 19.2% in mid-day trading today in response to a new buyout rumor regarding the company. According to StreetInsider, pharma giant Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) is interested in making a bid for the mid-cap drugmaker in a move to acquire its prescription fish-oil medication Vascepa. Amarin's shares have pulled back slightly since hitting their intraday high in the wake of this takeover rumor, but they remain up by a healthy 15.9% as of 12:28 p.m. EST.  

M&A spelled out with white wooden blocks on a tabletop.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Ever since Amarin released the positive cardiovascular outcome data for Vascepa's Reduce-It study late last year, the company has been subject to numerous buyout rumors. In fact, this isn't even the first time Pfizer's name has been floated as a possible suitor. The core reasons are that Pfizer is a leader in the cardiovascular space, has a clear hole to fill with the upcoming patent expiration for its nerve pain medication Lyrica, and has oodles of cash to pursue deals. All that being said, there's no telling if this latest buyout rumor has any more substance than all the previous ones. 


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Now what

So, even though this match seems to make a lot of sense from a fit perspective, investors may want to take this takeover chatter with a huge grain of salt. But that doesn't mean that Amarin isn't a compelling growth stock to own this year. 

While Vascepa's sales aren't expected to benefit in a meaningful way until the Food and Drug Administration officially grants the drug a label expansion for the vast Reduce-It population, this novel cardiovascular treatment appears to be well on its way toward achieving blockbuster status. Vascepa exhibited a highly significant cardioprotective benefit in the Reduce-It study, which should pave the wave for a successful regulatory filing later this year and tremendous demand in the years to come.