Roche to Acquire InterMune for $8.3 Billion
Roche and the biopharmaceutical company InterMune, Inc. have entered into a merger agreement for Roche to fully acquire InterMune at a price of $74.00 per share in an all-cash transaction or $8.3 billion.
Under the merger agreement, Roche will commence a tender offer no later than August 29, 2014, to acquire all outstanding shares of InterMune common stock, and InterMune will file a recommendation statement containing the unanimous recommendation of the InterMune board that InterMune's shareholders tender their shares to Roche.
InterMune, based in a Brisbane, California, focuses on developing therapies in based in pulmonology and fibrotic diseases, which would will allow Roche to broaden and strengthen its respiratory portfolio globally. InterMune's lead medicine pirfenidone is approved for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) in the European Union (EU) and Canada and is under regulatory review in the United States and is expected to launch in 2014.
Pirfenidone has been marketed by InterMune in the EU and Canada as Esbriet since regulatory approval in 2011 and 2012 respectively. After previous regulatory review in the US in 2010, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended an additional Phase III clinical trial to support the efficacy of pirfenidone. The results of this study were part of the new drug application (NDA) resubmission that InterMune made in May 2014. On July 17, 2014 pirfenidone received breakthrough therapy designation from the FDA. This designation is reserved for drugs that are intended to treat a serious or life-threatening disease or condition and preliminary clinical evidence indicates that the drug may demonstrate substantial improvement over existing therapies on one or more clinically significant endpoints. The target action date, also known as the PDUFA date, for the pirfenidone NDA is November 23, 2014.
In addition to pirfenidone, InterMune has research programmes exploring new targets and pathways that may lead to improved treatment options for people with IPF, and other fibrotic diseases. The deal is expected to close in 2014.