Amid operations concerns over the novel coronavirus pandemic, Mylan and Pfizer's Upjohn unit have already postponed the close of their pending generics megamerger. Now, in order to clear antitrust hurdles in Europe, the drugmakers have agreed to meet regulators in the middle.
Mylan and Upjohn have agreed to concessions as part of the European Commission's antitrust review of their pending merger, according to a commission filing. While the EU did not disclose just what those concessions are, the sale of competing assets in merging drugmakers' portfolios is often a sticking point for antitrust legislators.
An EU-required asset sale wouldn't be unusual given recent history. The commission recently demanded AbbVie and Allergan divest late-stage GI candidate brazikumab in order to clear antitrust review for their own merger––which they did, to AstraZeneca, in a transaction that closed earlier this month.
To appease regulators, AbbVie and Allergan also agreed to offload two pancreatic replacement enzymes, Zenpep and Viokace, in a separate deal with Nestle Health.
Mylan and Pfizer, meanwhile, had already opted to delay the close of their merger as COVID-19 shakes up drugmakers' operations across the board. Last week, the pair said they would postpone the close until the second half of 2020, citing "unprecedented circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, including associated delays in the regulatory review process," Mylan said in a release.
At the time, Mylan said it did not expect any changes to the terms of the deal. Mylan also said it would postpone its annual meeting, scheduled for late April, until June 30.