Merger Thursday: Gilead Buys German Drug Company, Aytu-Neos All-Stock Deal, Boehringer Picks Up NBE-Therapeutics

Merger Thursday: Gilead Buys German Drug Company, Aytu-Neos All-Stock Deal, Boehringer Picks Up NBE-Therapeutics

The day dawned as an M&A Thursday for the biotech sector, as a slew of deals of varied sizes were announced, with Gilead Sciences, Inc. GILD and Aytu BioScience, Inc. AYTU in the mix.

Gilead Snaps Up Germany Drug Company In $1B Deal: Large-cap pharma Gilead announced Thursday an agreement to acquire German biotech MYR, which focuses on therapeutics for chronic hepatitis delta virus, or HDV, for an upfront payment of 1.15 billion euros ($1.39 billion) in cash, payable upon closing of the transaction, and 300 million euros ($363 million) in potential future milestone payments.

The acquisition will bring into Gilead's stable Hepcludex, which was conditionally approved by the European Medicines Agency for chronic HDV.

Hepcludex has been launched in France, Germany and Austria, and is on the cusp of being launched elsewhere in the European Union.

MYR is planning to submit a regulatory application for accelerated approval of Hepcludex in the U.S., which has granted the therapy both orphan drug and breakthrough therapy designations.

Gilead said the closing of the transaction is subject to antitrust clearance in the U.S. and the receipt of merger control approvals in certain European jurisdictions.

The acquisition, Gilead said, will enhance its revenue growth and moderately add to non-GAAP EPS moderately beginning in the third year after the closing.

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Aytu to Buy Neos: Specialty pharma company Aytu announced a deal to acquire commercial-stage pharma company Neos Therapeutics Inc NEOS in an all-stock merger transaction.

The boards of both companies have approved the deal.

Upon the closing of the merger, Neos shareholders will receive 0.1088 shares of Aytu for each share they hold in Neos, after taking into account the 1-for-10 reverse split of Aytu shares that took effect Dec. 8.

The deal terms value Neos at $44.9 million.

Neos shareholders will end up owning a 30% stake in Aytu.

"The combined entity will have an increased footprint in the prescription pediatric market, an established, growing multi-brand ADHD portfolio addressing the $8.5 billion ADHD market and significant combined revenue scale," the companies said in a statement. 

For the 12-month period ended Sept. 30, the combined pro forma revenues of the companies would have been $100 million.

The companies see operational and commercial synergies that can help to accelerate the path to profitability for the combined entity, with estimated annualized cost synergies of approximately $15 million beginning in fiscal year 2022.

The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2021.

Boehringer Ingelheim To Buy Swiss Cancer Biotech: Privately held German pharma company Boehringer Ingelheim agreed to buy private Swiss biotech NBE-Therapeutics for 1.18 billion euros ($1.43 billion).

NBE-Therapeutics is focused on antibody-drug conjugates and advancing targeted cancer therapies derived from its immune stimulatory iADC platform. Its lead compound NBE-002 is currently in Phase 1 clinical studies for triple negative breast cancer and other solid tumors.

Boehringer Ingelheim said it expects to leverage the iADC platform to build a leading ADC portfolio and develop potential combinations with other assets from its cancer immunology portfolio.

At last check, Gilead shares were slipping 0.81% to $60.33. Neos shares were surging 68.19% to 93 cents and Aytu was advancing 33.24% to $9.10. 

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