Pharmaceutical giants Allergan and Pfizer are merging in an acquisition worth $160bn. The merger is set to form the world’s largest pharmaceutical company but has drawn a wave of criticism, especially from American diplomats who dissent the fact that the company will be headquartered in Ireland, meaning job losses for the American people. This has not prevented a host of US firms advising throughout the deal. Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom is being instructed by Pfizer with a team comprising of M&A, tax and IP partners. Due to the international aspect of such a deal, Skadden has also deployed a number of lawyers from their Brussels office to provide advice on aspects such as European Union and international competition law. Pfizer were also advised by Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz, who counselled the firm in practice areas such as corporate, antitrust and executive compensation and benefits. Magic Circle firm Clifford Chance is also firmly within the mix having advised Pfizer on aspects of the merger that occur outside of the US and Canada. A&L Goodbody will be resolving any issues revolving around Irish law including debt matters and employee benefits.
Allergan has also been instructing a number of US and Irish firms, Principally, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton who are providing employee compensation and benefits, capital markets, securities and financing, IP and environmental advice while their Brussels office is providing non-US antitrust advice. Latham & Watkins and Weil Gotshal & Manges have also provided legal counsel, while Arthur Cox is the only Irish firm to advise Allergan on Irish law matters.