Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Might Zoetis' Impending Launch Explain Merck's NYSE Chart Today?

With Pfizer's Animal Health businesses set to debut (under the less-than awe-inspiring name "Zoetis"), as a partially independent public company on February 1, 2013, it struck me that the investment community may be awakening (see one smallish example) to the fact that ZoetisTM will be the largest animal health "pure play" on the planet. Zoetis will thus easily eclipse Merck's similar businesses, in size and global reach.

In addition, and of concern to Whitehouse Station, Zoetis will no longer be competing for capital with the various higher-margin pure human pharma projects -- at the allocation meetings, with ex-mother-Pfizer.

In fact, Zoetis will have its own public equity and debt markets to tap.

Finally, due to Zoetis' shark repellant measures, Merck may well be dissuaded from trying any sort of re-roll up transaction, with the legacy Schering-Plough/Intervet animal health businesses.

Zoetis is poised to be the clear market leader here. Maybe that explains the rather disproportionate decline on the NYSE today, in Merck, compared to its peers.

We will keep an eye on this.

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