Shire sees experimental drugs adding $3B to sales by 2020
Shire Plc's pipeline of experimental drugs will add $3 billion to revenue by 2020, the company said, two months after its 32-billion-pound ($54.8 billion) sale to North Chicago-based AbbVie Inc. fell apart.
Acquisitions also will help the company bring new therapies to patients, Shire said in a statement today before the drugmaker briefs investors and analysts in New York on its research and development efforts.
The presentation is part of Chief Executive Officer Flemming Ornskov's renewed effort to convince investors that Shire has a bright future as an independent company. Shire initially rejected AbbVie's approaches, with the CEO forecasting that the company's sales would double to $10 billion by 2020, lifted by medicines for rare illnesses and by Lifitegrast, an experimental treatment for dry-eye disease.
"Shire's clear and focused strategy has enabled us to transform our pipeline with 22 programs in the clinic, the most in Shire's history," Ornskov said in the statement.
AbbVie walked away from the acquisition in October, paying Shire a $1.64 billion breakup fee, after changes in U.S. tax rules made the transaction less appealing for the North Chicago, Illinois-based company. With the deal, AbbVie planned to move from the U.S. in a so-called tax inversion to lower its tax rate and give it access to cash trapped overseas. Shire is based for tax purposes in Ireland, has executive offices in Basingstoke, England, and Ornskov and some other top managers work in Lexington, Massachusetts.
Ornskov would prefer that Shire remain independent, though further takeover approaches are possible, the CEO said in an Oct. 24 interview. He's focused on making the company "as attractive as possible," said Ornskov, who has been chief executive since May last year.
Shire rose 1.5 percent to 44.01 pounds at 12:05 p.m. in London. AbbVie's cash-and-stock offer valued Shire at about 52.50 pounds a share when it was announced July 18.