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Allergan plc
Traded as NYSEAGN
S&P 500 Component
Industry Branded and generic pharmaceuticals, and pharmaceutical research and development.
Founded Libertyville, Illinois, United States (Spring 1984)
Founder Allen Chao, Ph.D. and David Hsia, Ph.D.
Headquarters Dublin, Ireland and Parsippany-Troy Hills, New Jersey, United States.
Number of locations
40 manufacturing facilities, 27 global R&D centers and marketing/sales facilities worldwide.
Area served
~100 Countries
Key people
Paul Bisaro, Executive Chairman, Brenton L. Saunders President and CEO
Products Branded and generic pharmaceuticals
Revenue US$ 4.2 billion(Q1 2015) [1]
Increase US$ 1.090 billion (2014)
Decrease -US$ 1.630 billion (2014)
Total assets Increase US$ 6.881 billion (2014)
Total equity Increase US$ 28.335 billion (2014)
Number of employees
30,000 (June 2015)

Allergan, plc (formerly known as Actavis, plc) is a global pharmaceutical company focused on developing, manufacturing and commercializing branded pharmaceuticals, generic and over-the-counter medicines, and biologic products. Allergan has a commercial presence across approximately 100 countries. The company has global headquarters in Dublin, Ireland and administrative headquarters in Parsippany-Troy Hills, New Jersey, United States.[2]


Actavis facility in Iceland
Allergan headquarters in Irvine

Allergan markets a portfolio of brand products in key therapeutic categories including: Aesthetics/Dermatology/Plastic Surgery; Neurosciences/CNS; Eye Care; Women’s Health and Urology; GI and Cystic Fibrosis; and Cardiovascular Disease and Infectious Disease.[3] The company's product portfolio includes Botox,[4] Namenda, Restasis,[5] Linzess, Bystolic,[6] Juvederm,[7] Latisse,[8] Lo Loestrin Fe, Estrace, Teflaro, Dalvance, Ozurdex,[9] Optive,[10] Natrelle,[11] Viibryd, Liletta, Saphris,[3] Enablex, Actonel, Androderm, Gelnique and others.

Allergan also operates the world's third-largest generics business and has more than 40 manufacturing and distribution facilities around the world, with a capacity of approximately 40 billion units annually. Allergan Global Operations also includes Anda, Inc., the fourth-largest U.S. generic pharmaceutical product distributor in the United States.[12]

Allergan is also developing biosimilars products in oncology and other therapeutic categories, and currently has a portfolio of five biosimilar products in development.[13]

On February 18, 2015, the entity formerly known as Actavis announced its intention to change its name to Allergan, and was completed as of June 15, 2015.[14][15]


The company was founded in the spring of 1983,[16] as Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc. With funding from friends and family, colleagues Allen Chao, Ph.D. and David Hsia, Ph.D., began a small drug development enterprise. Just two months later, the founders established an initial product development and analytical laboratory with six employees (including both founders) in a leased space in Libertyville, Illinois.

By late fall of the same year, the company moved to Southern California into an initial 2,000-square-foot (190 m2) leased facility in Corona, and the development and manufacturing of generic pharmaceuticals began.[17] The Corona site became the corporate headquarters for the rapidly expanding U.S. company.

Company evolution[edit]

The 1990s[edit]

Throughout its history, Allergan has expanded both organically and as the result of strategic acquisitions that brought broader product lines, enhanced drug delivery technologies, and ultimately branded pharmaceutical products to the company. In 1993, Allergan, then Watson, announced its initial public offering (IPO) of shares of common stock. The company was initially listed on the NASDAQ under the ticker symbol WATS. The company moved to the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in 1997, and began trading under the symbol WPI.

2000 to 2009[edit]

In 2000, the company acquired Schein Pharmaceutical, Inc., an acquisition that more than doubled the company’s size.[18] In that same year, the group reported revenues in excess of $1 billion. In the fall of 2006, it acquired Andrx Corporation, a Fort Lauderdale, FL–based pharmaceutical company, making it the third largest specialty pharmaceutical company based on total prescriptions dispensed.[19] In 2007, Dr. Allen Chao retired as President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and was succeeded by Paul M. Bisaro.[20] The company’s international presence began with the acquisition of the Arrow Group in 2009, providing the company with commercial presence in more than 20 international markets.[21] As a result of the Arrow acquisition, the company also acquired the biopharmaceutical development organization Eden Biodesign in Liverpool, UK.[22]

2011 to 2014[edit]

In 2011, the company moved its corporate headquarters from Corona, California to Parsippany, New Jersey. The new LEED-certified corporate headquarters at the Morris Corporate Center in Parsippany was formally dedicated on June 9, 2011.[23]

Actavis Acquisition and Watson Name Change[edit]

In November 2012, Watson acquired the Switzerland-based, global generics company Actavis Group for EUR4.25 billion, creating the world’s third largest generics company, with a leading position in key established commercial markets including the U.S., UK, Nordics, Canada, Australia, and emerging markets in Central and Eastern Europe, and Russia.[24] Following the acquisition, Watson adopted Actavis' name for its global operations.

On March 1, 2013, the company acquired MAP Pharmaceuticals Inc., a development-stage company mainly researching the treatment of migraine and other oral drugs in Neurology for approximately $958 million. The principal products of this sub-company are under review with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).[25]

Warner Chilcott plc Acquisition[edit]

On October 1, 2013 Actavis acquired Irish pharmaceutical company Warner Chilcott plc (previously known as Galen) in a stock-for-stock transaction valued at approximately $8.5 billion.[26] The combination created a company with approximately $10 billion in anticipated combined annual 2013 revenue, and the third-largest U.S. specialty pharmaceutical company with approximately $3 billion in annual revenue focused on the core therapeutic categories of women’s health, urology, gastroenterology and dermatology. In association with the merger the company relocated its corporate headquarters to Ireland while maintaining its operational headquarters in Parsippany, taking advantage of the lower (17% vs. 35% in the United States) Irish corporate tax rate.[27] This deal inspired a series of similar moves by other drug companies and led to new Treasury Department regulations limiting the ability of companies to perform such inversions, although Actavis was exempt from these regulations as its move abroad had already been completed.[28] CEO Paul Bisaro stated that in making the inversion, they were trying to "level the playing field" given the high corporate tax rate in the United States.[29]

Forest Laboratories Acquisition[edit]

On July 1, 2014 Actavis announced that it had completed its acquisition of Forest Laboratories (who previously acquired, Furiex Pharmaceuticals Inc and Aptalis Pharma) in a cash and equity transaction valued at approximately $25 billion.[30] Following the acquisition, the company restructured its executive leadership, with Paul Bisaro being named Executive Chairman, and Brent Saunders being appointed CEO and President of the combined organization.[31]

Allergan Acquisition and Actavis Name Change[edit]

In November 2014 Actavis announced its intention to acquire Allergan, the manufacturer of Botox[32] Completion of the deal would increase its market capitalization to $147 billion.[33][34] On March 17, 2015, Actavis completed the acquisition of Allergan in a cash and equity transaction valued at approximately $70.5 billion. The combination created a $23 billion diversified global pharmaceutical company with commercial reach across 100 countries. In June 2015, Actavis officially changed its name to Allergan.[35]

2015 to the present day[edit]

In June 2015 Allergan announced it would acquire Kythera Biopharmaceuticals for around $2.1 billion.[36] On June 1, the company completed its acquisition of Auden Mckenzie Holdings Limited for £306 million.[37] On July 6, the company acquired start-up, Oculeve, for $125 million.[38] On July 7 the company announced it would acquire Merck & Cos late stage CGRP migraine portfolio, as well as two experimental drugs (MK-1602 and MK-8031) for $250 million.[39] In July, Allergan agreed to sell off its small molecule generic drug business, not including its biosimilars business, to Teva Pharmaceutical Industries for $40.5 billion ($33.75 billion in cash and $6.75 billion worth of shares).[40][41] A day later, the company announced it would acquire Naurex Inc for $560 million with more tied to regulatory milestones.[42][43]

Acquisition history[edit]

The following is an illustration of the company's major mergers and acquisitions and historical predecessors (this is not a comprehensive list):

(formerly known as Actavis until June 2015
when it adopted Allergans name


Auden Mckenzie Holdings Limited
(Acq 2015 by Actavis)


Durata Therapeutics
(Acq 2014 by Actavis)


Forest Laboratories
(Acq 2014 by Actavis)

Furiex Pharmaceuticals Inc
(Acq 2014 by Forest)

Aptalis Pharma
(Eurand Pharmaceuticals & Axcan Pharma merged 2011,
Acq 2014 by Forest)


(Acq 2013 by Actavis)

Warner Chilcott Plc
(Acq 2000 by Galen, adopted Warners name)

Procter & Gamble's prescription drug unit
(Acq 2009 by Warner)


Watson Pharmaceuticals

Andrx Corporation
(Acq 2006 by Watson)


Arrow Group
(Acq 2009 by Watson)


Eden Biodesign
(Acq by Watson)


Specifar Pharmaceuticals S.A.
(Acq 2011 by Watson)


Ascent Pharmahealth Ltd
(Acq 2012 by Watson)


Actavis Group
(Acq 2012 by Watson, adopted Actavis' name)

(Acq 2014 by Actavis)

(Spun off in 2006 as Advanced Medical Optics)

MAP Pharmaceuticals Inc
(Acq 2013)

Inamed Corporation
(Acq 2006)

Kythera Biopharmaceuticals
(Acq 2015)

(Acq 2015)

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries
(Generic Drug Div, Sold 2015)

Naurex Inc
(Acq 2015)

Safety reports[edit]

In 2011, FDA reported issues in the investigation of safety of silicone gel-filled breast implants. However, the company announced later the reassurance to patients of the safety and exclusion of its drugs from the investigated breast implant devices, stating that all of its products are above safety standards around the world.[44]

In December 2013, the company sold its obesity intervention business to Apollo Endosurgery, Inc., for a cash payment of $75 million and a $15 million minority equity interest in Apollo Endosurgery.[45]

The use of infant foreskin fibroblast in products[edit]

The use of foreskin fibroblasts in some of the company's cosmetic products such as "Skinmedica" has caused controversy.[46]

Key Products[edit]


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  7. ^ "Juvederm". Allergan. 
  8. ^ "Latisse" (PDF). Allergan. 
  9. ^ "Ozurdex". Allergan. 
  10. ^ "Optive". Allergan. 
  11. ^ "Natrelle". Allergan. 
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  20. ^ "Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Says CEO to Retire, Names Replacement". Fierce Biotech. 
  21. ^ Shannon Pettypiece (2009-06-17). "Watson Agrees to Buy Arrow Group for $1.75 Billion". Bloomberg. [dead link]
  22. ^ Gareth Macdonald. "Watson buys Eden Biodesign". 
  23. ^ "Generic drug maker Watson opening research operations in North Brunswick". 
  24. ^ Eyk Henning (2012-04-25). "Watson, Actavis to Merge in €4.5 Billion Deal". Wall Street Journal. 
  25. ^ "Allergan, Inc.: quotes & news - Google Finance". 
  26. ^ "News - Actavis". Actavis. 
  27. ^ Loftus, Peter (2013-05-20). "Actavis to Buy Warner Chilcott in $5 Billion Deal". The Wall Street Journal. 
  28. ^ Gelles, David (2014-11-17). "Allergan Escapes Valeant’s Pursuit, Agreeing to Be Bought by Actavis". The New York Times. 
  29. ^ Drew Armstrong (2013-05-21). "Actavis Lowers Tax Rate to 17% After Warner Chilcott Deal". 
  30. ^ Wainer, David (2014-02-18). "Actavis to buy Forest Laboratories for 25 billion". Bloomberg. 
  31. ^ "GEN - News Highlights:Actavis Deal's a Dandy for Activist Icahn". GEN. 
  32. ^ "BBC News - Actavis to buy Botox-maker Allergan $66bn". BBC News. 
  33. ^ Caroline Chen (2014-11-17). "Actavis Surges to Top Drugmaker Ranks With Acquisitions". 
  34. ^ Willhite, James (2014-11-17). "The Morning Ledger: Actavis Could Again Evade Treasury’s Grasp for Post-Inversion Tax Break". WSJ. 
  35. ^ "Actavis plc is now Allergan plc". Retrieved 16 June 2015. 
  36. ^ "Allergan to Acquire Kythera for $2.1B". GEN. 
  37. ^ "News - Actavis UK - Actavis". 
  38. ^ "Allergan bets $125M on a new approach to dry eye disease". FierceBiotech. 
  39. ^ "UPDATED: Bowing out of crowded race, Merck sells a migraine drug to Allergan for $250M". FierceBiotech. 
  40. ^ Cynthia Koons (27 July 2015). "Teva CEO: $40.5 Billion Allergan Deal is Just the Beginning - Bloomberg Business". 
  41. ^ Chitra Somayaji (27 July 2015). "Teva Snaps Up Allergan’s Generics Arm, Dumping Mylan". 
  42. ^
  43. ^
  44. ^ "Allergan - Allergan Reassures Patients and Surgeons of the Quality and Safety of Its Breast Implant Devices Sold and Distributed Worldwide". 
  45. ^ "Allergan, Inc. Completes Sale of Obesity Intervention Business". 
  46. ^ Bronstein, Phil (18 July 2011). "What's in a face? You'd be surprised". SFGate. Retrieved 13 May 2015. 

External links[edit]