The Antitrust Week In Review
Here are some of the developments in antitrust news this past week that we found interesting and are following.
Viatris Agrees to Settle EpiPen Antitrust Litigation for $264 Million. Viatris, the drugmaker previously known as Mylan, announced that it had agreed to pay $264 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that alleged the company was involved in an illegal scheme to monopolize the market for epinephrine auto-injector devices known as EpiPens, which are used to treat severe allergic reactions. The proposed settlement, which needs to be approved by a judge, would resolve a legal battle that began after Mylan, in 2016, raised the price for a pack of two EpiPens to $608 from $100, the price since 2007, according to court documents. In the lawsuit, a group of plaintiffs made up of consumers, health insurance companies and other third-party payers alleged that by drastically raising the price of EpiPens, the drugmaker was “unlawfully exercising its monopoly power,” according to a complaint.
EXCLUSIVE Illumina remedies on Grail bid unconvincing to EU antitrust regulators, sources say. U.S. life sciences company Illumina’s offer to cut prices and allow rivals continued access to its technologies has “yet to convince” EU antitrust regulators scrutinizing its $8 billion cash-and-stock bid for Grail Inc, people familiar with the matter said. Such doubts could mean that Illumina may have to sweeten its package of proposed remedies if it wants to win EU approval for the acquisition of the cancer detection test maker which it completed last August but is keeping as a separate company prior to regulatory approval.
U.S. Democrats meet with FTC chief on ‘troubling’ price increases. U.S. Senate Democrats met with Federal Trade Commission Chair Lina Khan to discuss “troubling” price increases in oil, gas, prescription drugs and other items, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer tweeted. The meeting occurred when Khan went to the Democratic Caucus lunch on Thursday, an FTC spokeswoman said. The Biden administration, headed into midterm elections in November with narrow holds on the Senate and the House of Representatives, was concerned about inflation even before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine pushed oil prices up sharply.
Edited by Gary J. Malone