Citi says lax cash management costs Big Pharma big bucks

Not known for being slow pay or aggressive with cash management, a new Citi report says pharma's biggest players are letting a much as $33 billion a year in cash slip away. That is not chump change in a world in which patents are falling and taking revenue with it. Citi says most of the biggest companies, like Pfizer ($PFE), Roche ($RHHBY) and Merck ($MRK), pay their bills faster than they collect from creditors, costing them beaucoup bucks, Reuters reports. Only Bristol-Myers Squibb ($BMY) collects before paying, Citi says. So how much could it mean to individual companies? The report puts the cash figure at $6.1 billion for Pfizer, $6 billion for Roche, $4.1 billion for Merck and $4 billion for Sanofi ($SNY) if they would limit how much of their money is tied up at any one time with suppliers, customers and in inventories. Story | More