Actavis to buy Forest Labs in $25 billion deal

Actavis PLC plans to buy Forest Laboratories Inc. for about $25 billion, catapulting little-known Actavis into the world’s No. 15 drugmaker, with an unusual one-stop-shopping model giving it an edge: more face time with doctors.

U.S. physicians, increasingly crunched for time, keep reducing how many drugmaker sales reps they see. Forest gives Actavis not just a broader product line, but also its big U.S. sales force, which now can promote a half-dozen Forest and Actavis products at each doctor visit. That likely will result in more time and more options to present to primary care doctors, compared to rival brand-name drugmakers whose sales reps promote one or two drugs.

“They have just figured out a way to maximize use of time” with doctors, WBB Securities analyst Steve Brozak said Tuesday. “There’s no way big Pharma can compete with this.”