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Valeant Pharmaceuticals seeing Ophthalmology future

Authored by James Sheppard

On Monday 27th May, the Canadian pharmaceutical company Valeant Pharmaceuticals agreed to purchase the global ophthalmology company Bausch & Lomb (B&L). Valeant purchased Bausch & Lomb from the private equity firm Warburg Pincus. Valeant has traditionally grown its business with strategic acquisitions and mergers, which has helped to diversify its risk. This latest deal, Valeant’s largest to date at $8.7bn, is set to catapult the company into the upper ranks of the pharmaceutical sector. The deal will launch Valeant into the top 15 pharmaceutical companies in the world.

The acquisition strengthens Valeant’s offering in ophthalmic pharmaceuticals, contact lenses and lens care products. Bausch & Lomb is a 160 years old and Valeant CEO, Michael Pearson, believes that Valeant will be able to leverage Bausch & Lomb’s reputation in the market.

The deal crucially gives Valeant a platform in the emerging markets that they had previously lacked. Before the acquisition, Valeant only had small operations in Malaysia, Philippines, Hong Kong and South Africa. With the B&L acquisition, it gives Valeant large scale commercial and manufacturing operations in China and the Middle East. This platform expands on Valeant’s capabilities in the area garnered from recent acquisitions.  These emerging territories are now crucial for all companies looking to expand their operations. The ophthalmology market inparticular is expanding rapidly in emerging economies as the standards of healthcare increase.

By entering the ophthalmology market, Valeant are now directly competing with industry heavyweights Novartis, Allergan and Johnson & Johnson. With the global ophthalmology market forecast to reach $18.2bn in 2018, the opportunities for Valeant are clear. With their acquisition of Bausch & Lomb, the largest dedicated ophthalmology company, Valeant are sure to be well placed in the market for years to come.

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