GW Pharmaceuticals Takeover Talk 'Seems A Bit Premature'

Shares of GW Pharmaceuticals PLC - ADR GWPH soared Wednesday from around $83 per share to close at $104.03 after Reuters reported the company is in talks with an investment banks to consider strategic alternatives.

GW Pharmaceuticals is a developer of marijuana-based epilepsy treatments. The company was said to have been approached by other drugmakers and hired investment bankers at Morgan Stanley to help handle the overtures.

Reuters noted that companies that could have an interest in acquiring GW Pharmaceuticals include its partners who distribute its drug, Sativex. Current partners include Novartis, Bayer and Almirall.

Related Link: Is GW Pharma's Technical Picture Breaking Down?

GW Pharmaceuticals is also overseeing late-stage clinical trials for Epidiolex, a drug that uses cannabis-based compounds to treat epilepsy.

Alan Brochstein, a founding partner at New Cannabis Ventures and Founder of 420 Investor, told Benzinga he found the timing of any M&A action to be earlier than he expected.

Brochstein noted that GW Pharmaceuticals has yet to share full data from two ongoing Phase 3 clinical trials, so the rumor "seems a bit premature."

He added that the company does have a "big opportunity" ahead and has been preparing to to market Epidiolex on its own.

"I would expect potential acquisition interest to increase after the company files its NDA for Epidiolex in 4-10 months," Brochstein also said.

Shares of Zynerba Pharmaceuticals Inc ZYNE also spiked up in sympathy, closing at $10.26. It was up another 6 percent to $10.98 in the pre-market session.

Posted In: Alan BrochsteinCannabis CompaniesEpidolexGW Pharmaceuticalsmarijuana companiesReuterssativexLong IdeasNewsRumorsM&ATop StoriesExclusivesMoversTrading Ideas

Ad Disclosure: The rate information is obtained by Bankrate from the listed institutions. Bankrate cannot guaranty the accuracy or availability of any rates shown above. Institutions may have different rates on their own websites than those posted on The listings that appear on this page are from companies from which this website receives compensation, which may impact how, where, and in what order products appear. This table does not include all companies or all available products.

All rates are subject to change without notice and may vary depending on location. These quotes are from banks, thrifts, and credit unions, some of whom have paid for a link to their own Web site where you can find additional information. Those with a paid link are our Advertisers. Those without a paid link are listings we obtain to improve the consumer shopping experience and are not Advertisers. To receive the rate from an Advertiser, please identify yourself as a Bankrate customer. Bank and thrift deposits are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Credit union deposits are insured by the National Credit Union Administration.

Consumer Satisfaction: Bankrate attempts to verify the accuracy and availability of its Advertisers' terms through its quality assurance process and requires Advertisers to agree to our Terms and Conditions and to adhere to our Quality Control Program. If you believe that you have received an inaccurate quote or are otherwise not satisfied with the services provided to you by the institution you choose, please click here.

Rate collection and criteria: Click here for more information on rate collection and criteria.