Merck & Co. To Acquire Pandion Therapeutics for $1.85 Bn
Merck & Co. has agreed to acquire Pandion Therapeutics, a Watertown, Massachusetts-based company developing therapeutics for autoimmune diseases, for an approximate total equity value of $1.85 billion.
Pandion is advancing a pipeline of precision immune modulators targeting critical immune control nodes. The company’s lead candidate, PT101, is an engineered IL-2 mutein fused to a protein backbone designed to selectively activate and expand regulatory T cells (Tregs) for the potential treatment of ulcerative colitis and other autoimmune diseases. Earlier this year (2021), Pandion announced that PT101 had completed a Phase Ia clinical trial, which achieved its primary objective of safety and tolerability. The company’s pipeline also includes PD-1 agonists in development for numerous autoimmune diseases.
Under the acquisition agreement, Merck, through a subsidiary, will initiate a tender offer to acquire all outstanding shares of Pandion. The closing of the tender offer will be subject to certain conditions, including the tender of shares representing at least a majority of the total number of Pandion’s shares of fully diluted common stock, the expiration of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act, and other customary conditions.
Upon the successful completion of the tender offer, Merck’s acquisition subsidiary will be merged into Pandion, and any remaining shares of common stock of Pandion will be cancelled and converted into the right to receive the same $60 per share price payable in the tender offer. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2021.