MSD discussing acquisition of Acceleron Pharma for $11 billion

pharmafile | September 28, 2021 | News story | Manufacturing and Production  

Leading science and technology company, Merck (known as MSD outside the US), is in advanced stages of acquiring Acceleron Pharma Inc, according to sources close to the matter.

Merck currently has a market value of about $185 billion, and according to the Wall Street Journal, “buying Acceleron would be consistent with the strategy of other big pharmaceutical companies, which use acquisitions as a faster way of gaining access to new drugs than developing them in-house over a longer period.”

Acceleron is a biopharmaceutical company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, focused on the development and commercialisation of treatments for blood-related disorders. They currently earn royalties from sales of Reblozyl, a drug to treat two blood-related disorders, and are developing another treatment for a type of high blood pressure that affects the lungs. Reblozyl, which is jointly co-promoted by Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) and Acceleron, brought in sales of $274 million in 2020, according to BMS.

As of Acceleron’s last close, it had a market value of $10.89 billion.

The deal for Acceleron has a market value of approximately $11 billion, and could be announced this week. This move could be significant for MSD, which currently has the cancer drug Keytruda in its portfolio, to add drugs for rare diseases to its pipeline.

A Bloomberg report stated that several drug-making companies were considered as potential suitors for acquiring Acceleron. This included MSD’s rival BMS, which owns 11.5% of Acceleron’s stock, as well as other prominent names such as Pfizer and Gilead Sciences.

Healthcare is one of the most prolific areas for deals, and according to Dealogic, companies in the sector have struck $292 billion worth of transactions so far this year.

Lina Adams

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