31 biopharmas at high risk of bankruptcy in 2020

November 19, 2019
Illustration credit: Brian Tucker/BioPharma Dive

Editor’s note: This is part of a series about bankruptcy in the biopharma industry. Click here for the main piece, about how threats facing the industry could lead to more filings, and click here for a running list of 2019 biopharma bankruptcies.

Business struggles, significant debt and legal liabilities put some industry players at particularly high risk of declaring bankruptcy in the near future, including large drugmakers like Teva Pharmaceutical and Bausch Health as well as small biotechs including Clovis Oncology and Puma Biotechnology.

A BioPharma Dive analysis identified 31 troubled biopharma companies that are at highest risk of going bankrupt in the next 12 months.

While rare in the drug industry, bankruptcy filings have ticked up in 2019, driven by growing legal, political and market pressures that could bring more companies to zero.

BioPharma Dive used data from CreditRiskMonitor, a firm that calculates the probability a company will go bankrupt in the next year using a 10-point scale called a FRISK score.

FRISK score Probability of bankruptcy within 12 months
Credit: Data from CreditRiskMonitor

The metric rates thousands of companies, with a FRISK score of 1 representing the most financially vulnerable. CreditRiskMonitor incorporates risk indicators such as bond agency ratings, stock volatility, financial ratios as well as crowdsourced subscriber data.

The company says FRISK scores have been 96% accurate in predicting bankruptcy. Among drug companies that went bankrupt this year, the company had rated each one at a FRISK score of 1 or 2 beforehand.

The typical drug company has a FRISK score of 7. BioPharma Dive tailored the following list to include biopharmas traded on major U.S. exchanges with current share prices above $1 and market values above $50 million, resulting in a list of 31 companies.

Click here for an interactive table of the full list. Here’s some of the most notable names on the list and how they got here. Market values and percent stock change are through Nov. 16.

The 31 biopharmas at high risk of bankruptcy

FRISK score
Market value
# employees
1-yr % change
Credit: Nami Sumida/BioPharma Dive