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Tax benefit: J&J preps to spend $22B+ on Swiss heart drug maker

Can use foreign billion to seal deal

At an estimated $22 billion plus -- four times what the company just agreed to pay for Abbott Medical Optics -- Johnson & Johnson's confirmation it is in talks to buy Switzerlad-based drugmaker Actelion and its pulmonary-arterial hypertension treatment, is a bigger merger "than we would have envisioned" J&J attempting -- and yet it also looks lucrative, writes drug analyst Jayson Bedford, in a report to clients of Raymond James & Associates. 

The New Jersey-based drug giant already has at least 10 new billion-dollar-sales biomedical treatments "in the pipeline" over the next three years, Bedford writes. But J&J is also facing a "negative $1 billion impact" on its anti-inflamatory Remicade, when Pfizer begins "earlier than expected" sales this week of its "biosimilar" rival Inflectra product.

Adding Actelion could boost J&J sales by more than $2 billion starting next year, erasing the Remicade drop, Bedford notes.

Since Actelion is based in Switzerland, J&J can use foreign profits to buy the company without waiting for the Republicans' promised tax relief.

So Bedford expects the resulting deal will boost J&J profits, especially if there are cost savings, too.