Centerview Partners, a New York-based investment advisory firm, has in recent years become a prolific adviser on mergers and acquisitions of life sciences companies. On Monday, its lengthy list of deals grew larger still.
The firm is serving as exclusive financial adviser to Oyster Point Pharma, which has agreed to be bought by the generic drug manufacturer Viatris in a deal valued at $424 million. Oyster said its board of directors unanimously approved the acquisition, which is expected to close in early 2023.
Including Oyster, Centerview has, since 2018, been an adviser on at least 52 biopharmaceutical acquisitions valued at $50 million or more, according to data compiled by BioPharma Dive. The number of these deals Centerview has worked on exceeds that of several bigger investment banks, including Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan Chase and Morgan Stanley.
BioPharma Dive’s count is based on advising relationships that were publicly disclosed alongside a deal’s announcement and may not include all participating firms.
Centerview frequently advises on biotech dealmaking
|Adviser||# of deals involved in*||Notable deals|
|Centerview Partners||52||Biohaven, Acceleron, MyoKardia|
|Goldman Sachs||29||ChemoCentryx, Turning Point, Medicines Co.|
|J.P. Morgan||23||Kymab, VelosBio, Aimmune|
|Morgan Stanley||18||Global Blood, Translate Bio, Audentes|
|PJT Partners||11||F-Star, Sierra, Kiadis|
*Biotech acquisitions since 2018. Count includes acquisitions for which the firm advised, doesn’t necessarily reflect exclusive relationships and may not include all relevant deals over the period.
The deals Centerview worked on range in both scope and size. This year alone, the firm helped advise Biohaven Pharmaceuticals, a migraine treatment company; Global Blood Therapeutics, a sickle cell disease drugmaker; and Akouos, a gene therapy developer. Respectively, those companies agreed to sell for $11.6 billion, $5.4 billion and up to $610 million.
The firm has also been involved in some of the largest biopharma M&A in recent memory. It worked on AstraZeneca’s $39 billion purchase of the rare disease drugmaker Alexion Pharmaceuticals. And Centerview served as financial adviser to Immunomedics during its sale to Gilead Sciences in 2020 — a deal that ultimately totaled $21 billion and fetched a premium of more than 100%.
Bigger buyouts like those typically feature multiple advisers. But Centerview often serves as an exclusive adviser to smaller biotech companies being sold.
All told, the combined value of biopharma acquisitions that Centerview has participated in since 2018 totals about $220 billion, according to BioPharma Dive data. The firm has also had a hand in other notable biopharma transactions, like Pfizer and GSK’s consumer healthcare joint venture and Mylan and Upjohn’s generic drug merger that resulted in Viatris.
Centerview was founded in 2006 by a group of investment bankers that included Blair Effron, former group vice chairman of UBS AG, and Stephen Crawford, former co-president of Morgan Stanley. By 2009, the firm had courted three senior bankers from Bank of America. It now has offices in New York, London, Paris and California, and says it has advised on over $3 trillion worth of transactions across various industries, spanning from retail and energy to finance and technology.
Oyster is Centerview’s newest healthcare deal to be announced. Based in New Jersey, Oyster develops therapies for eye conditions and, in late 2021, received clearance from the Food and Drug Administration to start selling Tyrvaya, a nasal spray for dry eye disease.
Viatris agreed to buy Oyster for $11 a share, which is 32% above where the target company’s shares traded at Friday’s market close. The deal also includes a so-called contingent value right worth up to $2 a share.
Centerview declined BioPharma Dive's request for comment.