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Biopharma’s 6 Biggest Deals: Were They Worth It?

With Amgen set to drop $10.4 billion on Onyx, investors are wondering how effective super-sized biopharma acquisitions are

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Sanofi-Aventis (Genzyme)

SanofiAventisLogoIn 2011, French drugmaker Sanofi-Aventis (SNY) nabbed Genzyme for $20.1 billion. Sanofi mostly had its eyes on Lemtrada (also known as Alemtuzumab), which treats multiple sclerosis, though a couple of other rare-disease treatments were also placed under Sanofi’s wings.

How has the drug done? Well, it hasn’t — Lemtrada was only in trials at the time, and still is. Its development does look promising though.  It’s in Phase 3 trials, and Europe’s Committee for Medical Products for Human Use has recommended a new active substance designation for the therapy.

It’s too soon to call the acquisition a good deal or a bad deal, but forecasters don’t expect the MS treatment to produce more than $1.0 billion in annual sales. That’s not exactly a great ROI.

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