Any rumors to the effect that Roche and Novartis may merge are just that -- rumors -- largely complete fantasies concocted on the back of one off-hand comment by a Novartis board member, Pierre Landolt. Senior executives at both Roche and Novartis completely dismiss such talk and indicate there is NOTHING in the offing between the two Swiss rivals.
Novartis on the other hand my be looking to restructure itself along the lines of Pfizer by spinning off the majority of its non-pharmaceutical businesses, i.e. animal health, consumer health, diagnostics and vaccines. That could potentially raise it $15-$20 B in funds to invest in its pharma business and Alcon eye care business. Activity on these latter fronts is much more likely than any kind of deal between Roche and Novartis. See Fierce Biotech.
Posted by Bruce Lehr Oct 8th 2013.