A jogger runs past a signage for pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in London April 22, 2014. (REUTERS/Luke MacGregor)
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Novartis and GlaxoSmithKline traded over $20 billion worth of assets Tuesday, aiming to bolster their best businesses and exit weaker ones as the drugs industry reshapes to cope with health care spending cuts and generic competition.The deals, which include Novartis buying GSK's cancer drugs and GSK acquiring Novartis' vaccines business, came hot on the heels of a newspaper report that AstraZeneca had turned down a $101 billion bid approach from Pfizer – a story that sent shares across the sector surging.Novartis said it was also selling to GSK its vaccines, excluding flu, for $5.25 billion plus potential milestone payments of up to $1.8 billion and ongoing royalties, as well as creating a joint venture with GSK in consumer health care.Novartis said it would start a separate sale process for its flu business immediately, which was not part of the GSK deal.Eli Lilly will have the world's No. 2 animal-health business by revenue in the wake of its deal with Novartis. BofA Merrill Lynch advised Lilly, while Goldman Sachs Group Inc. advised Novartis on the animal health deal.
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