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Coronavirus Pandemic Puts Upjohn-Mylan Megamerger on Hold

By Cory Renauer - Mar 26, 2020 at 12:33PM

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Pfizer's plan to merge its post-exclusivity segment with Mylan will have to wait.

Pfizer's (PFE -1.69%) plans to merge its huge post-exclusivity segment, Upjohn, with another giant drugmaker, Mylan (MYL) hit a coronavirus induced snag. According to Mylan, the plan to create a new company with between $19 billion and $20 billion in combined annual revenue will require more old-fashioned face-to-face time to complete than either company can responsibly allow during the coronavirus pandemic.

No additional changes 

The timing is the only part of the deal that the two companies expect to alter. The transaction was expected to take place during the first half of 2020, but now the partners are anticipating it will close in the second half of the year. 

Working at home with face mask.

Image source: Getty Images.

Mylan had scheduled the necessary extraordinary general meeting of its shareholders for April 27. That has now been rescheduled to occur in conjunction with its annual general meeting of shareholders on June 30.

A profit-producing behemoth

In 2020, Pfizer expects its Upjohn segment to earn between $3.8 billion and $4.2 billion before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA). Mylan expects its operations to deliver between $3.2 billion and $3.9 billion in EBITDA this year.

Once the transaction closes, Pfizer shareholders will own 57% of the new company, to be called Viatris, and Mylan shareholders will own the other 43%. 

Pfizer intends to make the transition as painless as possible for shareholders who have gotten used to its regular dividend payments. With somewhere between $7 billion and $8 billion in annual EBITDA to work with, Viatris shouldn't have any trouble committing to combined quarterly dividends that will add up for patient investors.

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