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Pfizer Turns to Unusual Deal Structure to Buy Biohaven Drugs

  • Biohaven assets that aren’t kept by Pfizer will be spun off
  • Complex structure lets Pfizer pay just for drugs it wants
Updated on

Pfizer Inc.’s $11.6 billion acquisition of Biohaven Pharmaceutical Holding Co. included a rarely used structure that could become a larger part of Big Pharma’s playbook in light of a tougher antitrust regime.

In the Biohaven deal, Pfizer is acquiring all of the company’s shares, according to a statement. Pfizer will keep two migraine drugs and some assets that are still in lab studies. The remainder -- drugs that are still in development -- will be spun off as a new publicly traded company.