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The Editors blog

An inside look at what’s happening within the pharma industry and across the PMGroup from the PMLiVE editorial team

2014: a year to build pharma's reputation

Recent megamerger prospects have led to a backlash in the mainstream media

As we hit the mid-point of 2014, early reflections of the year in pharma show a few key themes emerging.

The headlines have been dominated by the return of the 'megamerger', with Pfizer mounting a fierce but failed challenge to take over rivals AstraZeneca, while Valeant is continuing its mission to become a major player with a bid for Allergan, despite solid resistance from the company behind Botox.

One of the most interesting aspects of Pfizer's bid for AZ was the reaction from the media and government. It was never going to be straightforward deal, but when Prime Minister David Cameron and the leader of the opposition Ed Miliband got involved, things complicated quickly.

At the heart of criticism from Miliband and the press was US-based Pfizer's motives for the deal. Was the company just looking for an improved corporate tax rate by having a UK hub, and just what were the Pfizer's plans for AZ's grand ambitions to develop research in Cambridge, UK?

If the negotiations never actually achieved anything on the board table, they did shine a light on the mistrust that Pfizer and the wider industry is held in and the ever-present need to improve the reputation of pharma.

It's not a subject that has gone unnoticed by senior figures, and in March this year at the eyeforpharma conference in Barcelona, Jane Griffiths, company group chairman for Janssen EMEA, made a demanding case for pharma to be “revered by society”.

Good work if course being done in pharma, and evidence can be see in the finalists of the Communiqué Awards 2014. Taking place tomorrow in London, the Awards recognise and commend excellence and best practice in local, European and international healthcare communications.

Other examples of good work can be seen in the latest edition of the Communiqué directory, now available to view online. Communiqué contains case studies of important work in healthcare and a series of key industry insights.

Article by
Tom Meek

Editor, Communiqué tmeek@pmlive.com

2nd July 2014

From: Marketing

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