Editor's note: This article was first published earlier today on
Now, I have no secret knowledge of an imminent deal between Celgene and Biogen. I want to make that clear for the sake of the high-frequency trading algorithms. But at a time when healthcare investors seem especially primed for big, transformative biotech M&A, a deal in which Celgene acquires Biogen for -- let's call it $75 billion to $85 billion -- would be smart, profitable, opportunistic and certainly attention grabbing.
Here are five reasons for Celgene to buy Biogen:
1. Multiple sclerosis
Celgene would acquire an established multiple-sclerosis drug franchise -- Tecfidera, Avonex and Tysabri -- currently delivering more than $8 billion in sales annually. (That's as much revenue as Revlimid brings in today.) Granted, Biogen's core business isn't growing, and pricing pressure is and will remain an overhang -- but those MS drugs are still hugely profitable.
Most importantly, Celgene could use Biogen's MS franchise as a foundation to support the commercial launch of ozanimod, its own MS drug acquired through the Receptos deal. Ozanimod is...