Industry Breifs May 2014


Star Group Merges to Form Calcium

Star Group, the Philadelphia region’s largest independently owned marketing communications firm and the nation’s largest woman-owned WBE marketing communications agency, merged with Vox Medica and its parent company, Independence Healthcom Strategies Group. Star Group also merged with Calcium NYC, a full-service healthcare agency. Star Group will combine Calcium NYC and Vox Medica with its healthcare division, Star Life Sciences, to create a new independent healthcare marketing communications company called Calcium. Steven Michaelson will serve as the new agency’s CEO.

Takeda, Eli Lilly to Fight $9 Billion Punitive Damages Award

After concealing the fact that the diabetes drug Actos can cause cancer, Japanese drug manufacturer Takeda Pharmaceutical, along with its U.S. partner Eli Lilly, were ordered to pay $9 billion dollars in punitive damages—said to be one of the largest awards of its kind. Takeda was charged with $6 billion of the $9 billion award, while Eli Lilly was charged with $3 billion. Both companies say they will dispute the verdict.

Valeant and Pershing Pursue Allergan Buyout

Valeant Pharmaceuticals recently proposed a buyout of Allergan in a deal that would be valued at $48.50 in cash and 0.83 shares of Valeant common stock. According to Valeant—which also entered an agreement with activist investor William Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management to jointly acquire Allergan—the deal represents a substantial premium to Allergan. Allergan says its board will review and consider the proposal and proceed in a way that is in the best interests of its shareholders. Two days after that statement, Allergan adopted the “poison pill” defense—meaning a battle is in the offing.

Chris Duffey to Lead Seminar at Cannes Lions Health Festival

Sudler & Hennessey, a leading global healthcare communication network, announced that Chris Duffey, Senior Vice President and Group Creative Director, has been named to lead the “Mighty Mobile: Creativity at Our Finger Tips” seminar at the new Cannes Lions Health Festival, to be held on June 13-14, 2014, at the Palais des Festivals in Cannes, France. Duffey has focused on the integration of creative and digital to create relevant and memorable user journeys on the web, mobile and tablet for nearly 20 years.

Bayer Launches New HCP Resource

Bayer HealthCare launched an educational website for U.S. physicians for a rare, life-threatening condition called chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH). The site is designed to increase CTEPH disease awareness among healthcare professionals and educate them on proper CTEPH diagnosis and surgical treatment. A panel of CTEPH experts worked with Bayer to develop the content and direction of the website.

Precision for Medicine Acquires Hobart Group

Precision for Medicine, a specialized service company that supports next-generation approaches to drug development and commercialization recently merged with Hobart Group Holdings, the nation’s leading payer-focused communications firm. The merger underlies the company’s goal to build a “unique service that integrates evidence generation, analytics and communications to address the needs of the patient centric, multipayer landscape that characterizes modern healthcare,” says Ethan Leder, Precision CEO.

InVentiv Health Campbell Launches Consulting Services

Campbell Alliance, an inVentiv Health Company and industry leader in biopharmaceutical consulting, recently launched its consulting business in Tokyo, Japan—adding to 12 other locations in North America and Europe at which inVentiv has on-the-ground consulting services.


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