Deals In Depth: April 2021
Two $1bn+ alliances were penned in April. Vertex and Obsidian entered into an agreement surrounding the discovery of therapies that regulate gene editing for the treatment of serious diseases. Obsidian is eligible for up to $75m in up-front payments and research milestones and could get another $1.3bn in potential milestone payments across up to five potential programs. Artios signed a three-year global research collaboration with Novartis to discover and validate next-generation DNA damage response targets to enhance Novartis’ radioligand therapies. In the top April M&A by deal value, Thermo Fisher and publicly traded contract research organization PPD announced a definitive agreement under which Thermo Fisher will pay $47.50 per share (a 23% premium to the 10-day pre-announcement average) in cash for PPD, for a purchase price of $17.4bn plus the assumption of approximately $3.5bn of net debt. Financing reached $14.6bn in biopharma, $1.2bn in device, and $2.4bn in diagnostics.
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The agreement will accelerate the development of cell-based therapies, where Thermo Fisher will build and run a development center
Four $1b+ alliances were penned in May. Topping the list was Bristol-Myers Squibb’s deal with Agenus under which BMS will be granted a global exclusive license to the late-preclinical antibody program AGEN1777 along with a second undisclosed target. Agenus received a $200m up-front payment and could get up to $1.36bn in development, regulatory, and commercialization milestones, plus tiered royalties in the low double-digit to mid-teen range.
During Q1, biopharma merger and acquisition value reached $34.8bn and drew in $35bn in potential deal value (PDV) from alliances. Device company M&A values reached $10.2bn, while in vitro diagnostic firms and research tools players completed M&A activity that totaled $5bn.