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Takeda Pharmaceutical to buy larger Irish rival Shire for $62 bn

09 May 2018, 12:37 | Melanie Burgess

Takeda closes in on a final $64B deal to buy Shire, starts to consider divestitures — reports

Flemming Ornskov chief executive of Shire said that the deal offered “an opportunity to improve the lives of even more patients globally with rare and highly specialised conditions”

Shire, the Dublin-headquartered biotechnology giant focused on rare diseases, looks set to be acquired by Takeda Pharmaceutical in a deal worth £46bn after an offer by the Japanese group was recommended to shareholders.

Takeda, which has seen its market value slide to $34bn since announcing its interest, is taking over a much bigger rival.

Takeda has however obtained a $31 billion bridge loan to help finance the deal, a fact that had unnerved some investors before the deal's announcement.

However, Shire stock prices have rocketed more than 30 percent since late March.

Analysts have described Shire as an attractive target for Takeda, with a portfolio of existing treatments in fields where the barriers to entry are high and profits large.

Dr. Andrew Plump, Takeda's chief medical and scientific officer since 2015, said acquiring Shire will raise from three to 10 the number of late-stage clinical drugs that Takeda has in its pipeline.

The deal increases Takeda's exposure to the United States, the world's biggest pharmaceutical market. It represents a 60% premium to the share price low from before Takeda confirmed its interest in a buy, he wrote in a Tuesday note to clients.

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The deal would be the largest overseas acquisition by a Japanese company and propel Takeda into the top ranks of global drug firms.

The Shire name, he said, will disappear when the company becomes part of Takeda. He informed that the merger will retain about $600 million in replica research and development costs.

"Shire's highly complementary product portfolio and pipeline, as well as experienced employees, will accelerate our transformation for a stronger Takeda", Christophe Weber, Takeda CEO, said in a statement.

Takeda said the integrated company will be headquartered in Japan, listed in both Tokyo and NY, will expand its R&D presence in the Boston, US, area, and have major regional locations in Japan, Singapore, Switzerland and the US. All together, Takeda will pay 46 billion pounds, or roughly $62.1 billion.

The company expects it may reduce the combined workforce by 6% to 7% in the three years after the takeover, it said. If the deal closes, Shire shareholders will own around half of the combined business.

In a separate statement today, Takeda said it will continue to focus on growing its oncology portfolio, which along with its hematology holdings expanded previous year when Takeda acquired Ariad Pharmaceuticals for $5.2 billion.



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