Roche Holding agreed to acquire U.S. biotech Ignyta for $1.7 billion, following Bayer in buying into a class of experimental cancer drugs that home in on a specific mutation across many types of tumors.
Ignyta investors will get $27 a share in cash, the companies said in a statement Friday. That’s 74% higher than Thursday’s closing price. Both companies’ boards agreed to the deal.
Roche’s purchase comes about five weeks after Bayer signed a $1.55 billion licensing deal for Loxo Oncology’s larotrectinib, an experimental medicine similar to Ignyta’s entrectinib. Roche has said it will focus on small deals like Ignyta to build out its portfolio. The Swiss company, the world’s biggest maker of cancer drugs, is facing a critical transition as its three top-selling medicines lose patent protection.
San Diego-based Ignyta’s entrectinib is being tested in patient trials that, if successful, could be the basis for applications with regulators to sell the drug. Roche said it aims to complete the purchase in the first half of 2018.
Citigroup advised Roche on the deal, while Sidley Austin provided legal advice. Ignyta used bankers from BofA Merrill Lynch and J.P. Morgan Securities with Latham & Watkins as legal counsel.
Roche shares fell 0.1% to 246.50 Swiss francs at 9:10 a.m. in Zurich, valuing the company at 213 billion francs ($215 billion).
Ignyta was founded in 2011 by University of California, San Diego researcher Gary Firestein and Jonathan Lim, the former chief executive officer of Halozyme Therapeutics Inc.
Source: Bloomberg via Fortune
In 2017, Sanofi partnered with the Lebanon, New Hampshire-based ImmuNext to develop an antibody for autoimmune diseases like lupus and multiple sclerosis, which included giving Sanofi a worldwide license to develop frexalimab. The agreement involved milestone payments upto $500 million.
Global manufacturer for the pharmaceutical, biotech and nutraceutical markets, Lonza has announced that it has acquired Synaffix, a biotech company focused on the commercialisation of its clinical stage technology platform for the development of antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs).
In its hunt for the new head of its pharmaceutical systems business—which makes syringes, self-injection systems and other drug delivery devices for 70% of the top 100 drugmakers in the world, according to the company—BD landed on a candidate with plenty of experience among that customer group.