Japan's Takeda buying US cancer drugmaker for $5.2bn (Update)

January 9, 2017

Japan's top pharmaceutical company Takeda said it is buying a US cancer drugmaker for $5.2 billion, as its top executive left the door open to more overseas acquisitions.

Takeda is paying $24 a share for Ariad Pharmaceuticals, a premium of about 75 percent over Ariad's closing price on Friday, the companies said in a joint statement on Monday.

Ariad specialises in developing therapies for patients with rare forms of chronic and acute blood cancer leukaemia, lung cancer and other rare cancers.

The deal will give the Japanese buyer Ariad's drug brigatinib, an experimental therapy being tested in lung cancer, and already-on-the-market Iclusig, which is used to treat leukaemia.

Ariad has submitted brigatinib to US drug regulators for review with the firms saying the treatment could draw annual sales of more than $1.0 billion if approved for sale.

Takeda has been looking to refill its drug pipeline after patents have expired on some of its biggest medicines.

Japanese drugmakers are facing pressure in their home market as the government tries to cut prices of many branded medicines and put a greater focus on cheaper generics to rein in its health spending.

Takeda, led by Frenchman Christophe Weber, has been actively looking overseas, including its 2011 takeover of Swiss rival Nycomed for 9.6 billion euros (then $13.6 billion).

Canada's Valeant Pharmaceuticals had been in talks to sell its Salix gastrointestinal drugs business to Takeda for about $10 billion, although the talks broke down last year reportedly because of disagreements over the price.

Takeda's Weber said "potentially" there could be more deals ahead.

"(But) we are very strategic and very disciplined buyers," he told Bloomberg News in an interview.

"We are not scared to walk away if we feel all the conditions are not there."

Explore further: Ariad suspends sales of cancer pill Iclusig

Related Stories

Lawmakers demand answers on leukemia drug price hikes

October 20, 2016

Two top lawmakers on Thursday demanded information from a drug company that has raised prices on a leukemia drug, calling increases of tens of thousands of dollars a sign the company puts profits before patients.

Iclusig approved for rare leukemias

December 16, 2012

(HealthDay)—Iclusig (ponatinib) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat two rare forms of leukemia..

Recommended for you

Researchers identify source of opioids' side effects

January 17, 2017

A commercially available drug may help drastically reduce two side effects of opioid painkillers—a growing tolerance and a paradoxical increased sensitivity to pain—without affecting the drugs' ability to reduce pain, ...

CVS generic competitor to EpiPen, sold at a 6th the price

January 12, 2017

CVS is now selling a rival, generic version of Mylan's EpiPen at about a sixth of its price, just months after the maker of the life-saving allergy treatment was eviscerated before Congress because of its soaring cost to ...

Many misuse OTC sleep aids: survey

December 29, 2016

(HealthDay)—People struggling with insomnia often turn to non-prescription sleep remedies that may be habit-forming and are only intended for short-term use, according to a new Consumer Reports survey.

The pill won't kill your sexual desire, researchers say

December 15, 2016

Taking the pill doesn't lower your sexual desire, contrary to popular belief, according to research published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine. The authors of the research, from the University of Kentucky and Indiana University ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.