Dublin-based Icon PLC, which conducts clinical trials for drug companies and reported $2.8 billion in 2020 sales, will buy competitor PRA Health Sciences for $12 billion.
PRA is headquartered in Raleigh, NC.
PRA is an expert in using digital technologies to gather and report test results, allowing people to remain at home and send data to test centers over smartphones, for example.
The purchase will expand Icon’s reach into Asia and especially China, a growing market for the drug industry, Icon CEO Stephen Cutler said in comments quoted by the Wall Street Journal.
The union will spawn one of the world’s largest contract research organizations. The new company will test experimental drugs in animals, run human trials, and even send nurses into people’s homes to recruit test subjects and monitor results.
TRENDPOST: As with the other series of mergers and acquisitions, we continue to note these to illustrate the concentration of business ownership and decreasing competition in a variety of sectors. It should also be noted that the less competition, the less pressure to create innovative new products and services… since no contenders are fighting for market share. 

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