Open Markets Calls on FTC to Block “Largest Pharmaceutical Merger in History”
April 16, 2019
Washington, D.C. — Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. won shareholder approval last Friday for its $74 billion takeover of Celgene Corp., closing “the largest pharmaceutical merger in history” and creating “a cancer-drug giant”, according to Bloomberg.
Open Markets calls on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to block this deal. “The American pharmaceutical industry is already highly concentrated which has resulted in soaring drug prices and declining innovation,” said Open Markets Editorial and Policy Director, Phillip Longman. Open Markets echoes the concerns of Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) and Rep. Francis Rooney (R-FL) who have called on the FTC to investigate the consequences of this mega-merger.
Allowing these to corporations to combine would further diminish competition, reduce patient treatment options, and give Bristol-Myers monopolistic pricing power. It would also give Bristol-Myers the market power to block the access of more affordable substitutes. Moreover, the cost of the acquisition itself threatens to increase prescription prices.
Policymakers on both sides of the aisle and President Trump have declared they want pharmaceutical prices to go down. The FTC must do its job and protect the well-being of American citizens by blocking this mega-merger.
Press Contact: Stella Roque at Open Markets Institute, [email protected]