When two of the largest pharma giants in the world wanted to merge, everyone on Wall Street smiled a large smile and held out their open palms, waiting for the gods of fees to fill them gold.
But before everyone could be truly happy, a man in Washington named Jack Lew radically reformed the rules governing corporate inversions making it a lot more expensive and a lot less likely that New York City-based Pfizer would acquire Dublin-based Allergan. And just like that, everyone's happy ending was gone.
At stake for advisers is an estimated $350 million, according to previous estimates from consultants Freeman & Co. Pfizer was expected to pay $120 million to $150 million in fees while Allergan’s bankers would split $160 million to $200 million. Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Centerview Partners, Guggenheim Partners and Moelis & Co. worked for Pfizer. Allergan was advised by JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Morgan Stanley.
But that's not all...
The loss of this deal could be particularly harmful for smaller investment banks, which had gained standing in M&A league tables after working on a mega-deal.
Basically, this Pfizer/Allergan deal is like that movie "Brooklyn" but the cute girl is a drug company and - thanks to Jack Lew - she ain't never coming back to the five boroughs.
And also Goldman loses out on some money.