It may be that, in time (like after 2018), we see a major global contraction in pharma and bio-science spending due to Brexit — but I’d certainly not make that guess today. It is hard to know, here on day two of this news cycle — but this seems just a little overblown.
One thing almost all of the larger multinational life science companies are blessed with is. . . cash. Lots of it — conveniently sitting right there, in Europe, to boot. And very modest debt levels, relative to other very large companies, in almost all other industries. [The only notable exception to that general rule would be certain tech players, like Apple and Microsoft.] In almost all other cases, it will be pharma that will be likely to readily, and freely deploy cash (from its vast stored reserves of the stuff, in Europe, in particular) as needed — to keep growing, in all these highly-lucrative developed markets.
So I’d say that this author is a little too “Chicken Little” for my tastes.
Pharma will adjust. It always does — it always will. It may hit rough patches, for a quarter or two, as things get sorted out — but it is as sound a sector as can be found, in uncertain times — like these. Here’s a bit of the Forbes froth (do feel free to consume with a truckload of salt):
. . . .The realities of newly uncertain markets will shake every major pharmaco. Based on what I’ve seen before, one of the first casualties becomes R&D. Next less profitable operations are quick to be shuttered. Finally when even more severe actions occur it will be easy to “Blame it on Brexit” for everything that goes bad or any type of corporate reshuffling. That won’t be pretty. . . .
As I say — it could come true — IF Germany votes to leave, and France does too — while weaker economies wrestle to rope them back in. But that seems unlikely — in fact, it seems that my cousins in Ireland, and those in Scotland, may hold referenda to rejoin the EU, and leave the UK. Either way — I’m not much for the histrionics, here. I do think taxation will change among these economies — but not until after 2018.
G’night to one and all of good will.