8. Buyer: Salix Pharmaceuticals
Price: $2.6 billion
Salix ($SLXP) is another drugmaker that is not a usual suspect for this list. It is a specialty pharma company and its specialty is gastrointestinal drugs. One of its products is one of only two botanicals--plant-derived drugs--approved by the FDA. It is also not very large. Its revenues last year were less than $1 billion, less than the milestone for a blockbuster. But with an M&A deal that qualifies as one of the top 10 of the year, it expects to be more diverse and at least a little larger.
The Raleigh, NC-based drugmaker offered up $2.6 billion to buy Santarus, also a specialty maker with a gastrointestinal portfolio. Its products include Uceris, approved last year for treating ulcerative colitis, as well as the stomach acid-reducing combination pill Zegerid. But Santarus also came with a few products that work on conditions outside the gastrointestinal tract. It has two oral treatments for Type 2 diabetes, Glumetza and Cycloset, and Fenoglide, used to lower high cholesterol, which it promotes to doctors who treat patients with Type 2 diabetes. Santarus also has a pipeline of a handful of treatments for angioedema and traveler's diarrhea.
Combined, the two companies had pro forma income of $1.348 billion last year, and they think with combined sales forces to market their drugs to each other's clients there is plenty more upside even this year.
Gastro specialist Salix nabs Santarus and new colitis drug in $2.6B deal
With FDA nod on Uceris, Santarus puts out 'help wanted' sign for sales reps
FDA approves 2nd botanical in 8 years, Fulyzaq from Salix
FDA 'sucker punches' Salix with Xifaxan denial
-- Eric Palmer (email | Twitter)