Friday 24 November 2017

The Elan rollercoaster's done – so who's still hanging on?

Kelly Martin, CEO of Elan
Kelly Martin, CEO of Elan

With the sun finally setting on Elan, it's the end of a rollercoaster ride for shareholders and the company. Fortunes have been made and lost on the back of its shares. They were prone to wild volatility over the past decade, related to events from dodgy accounting practices, to deaths that occurred in some patients using Elan's Tysabri drug when it first launched.

They had contracted a deadly brain disease after using the multiple sclerosis treatment. 'The Punt' recalls one amiable US-based investor with strong Irish links who by 2004 was sitting on a paper fortune of more than $4m (€3.01m) after buying Elan shares near rock bottom for a total of $650,000. He later lost it all as the company's shares plunged again on the emergence of the brain disease. A senior investment adviser, he was later selling conservatories.

And all that's left now of Elan is a shell (and royalty streams from Tysabri), but a very useful one for Perrigo, which has offered $8.6bn for the Irish firm. But the sale also means a payday for executives including chief executive Kelly Martin (left).

To be fair, he stayed the course for a decade when at times it must have been tempting to jump ship.

He's now set up quite nicely for an early retirement, if he so chooses. After 10 years at the helm, it must be time for a chill pill.

Indo Business

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