For $50 per share or approximate value of $1.6 billion, UK based Eli Lilly is all set to acquire USA based ARMO BioSciences. ARMO BioSciences is a company that is working on a late stage immune oncology that is developing a pipeline of novel, proprietary product candidates that is designed to activate the immune system of cancer patients to recognize and eradicate tumors.
According to Sue Mahony, Ph.D., Lilly senior vice president and president of Lilly Oncology:
“At Lilly Oncology, we are dedicated to developing cancer medicines that will make a meaningful difference for patients. The acquisition of ARMO BioSciences adds a promising next generation clinical immunotherapy asset to Lilly’s portfolio of innovative oncology medicines.”
ARMO’s lead product candidate is pegilodecakin, a PEGylated IL-10 which has demonstrated clinical benefit as a single agent, and in combination with both chemotherapy and checkpoint inhibitor therapy, across several tumor types. This will bolster Lilly’s immune-oncology program. Currently being studied in Phase 3 clinical trial in pancreatic cancer and earlier-Phase trials in lung and renal cell cancer, melanoma and other solid tumor types, Pegilodecakin is one of the many immune oncology product candidates that ARMO offers is various stages of pre-clinical development.
Levi Garraway, M.D., Ph.D., senior vice president, global development and medical affairs, Lilly Oncology also added the following:
“As we develop our immuno-oncology portfolio, Lilly will pursue medicines that use the body’s immune system in new ways to treat cancer. We believe that pegilodecakin has a unique immunologic mechanism of action that could eventually allow physicians to offer new hope for many cancer patients.”
Peter Van Vlasselaer, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of ARMO BioSciences added the following about the acquisition:
“ARMO is proud of the work we have done to advance the study of immunotherapies and of the development of pegilodecakin to-date. Given the resources that Lilly, a leader in oncology R&D, can bring to bear to maximize the value of pegilodecakin and the rest of the ARMO pipeline, we believe it is in the best interest of ARMO, our stockholders and the patients we serve, to execute this transaction.”
Expected to close by the end of the second quarter of 2018 and subject to customary closing conditions including the approvals of the required regulatory organizations and the tender of a majority of the outstanding shares of ARMO’s common stock, Lilly will acquire any shares of ARMO that are not tendered into the tender offer through a second-step merger at the tender offer price.
Lily was assisted by Credit Suisse as the exclusive financial advisor while Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz is acting as their legal advisor. ARMO BioSciences were assisted by Centerview Partners LLC as the lead financial advisor while Jefferies LLC is providing financial advice to ARMO, and Gunderson Dettmeris acting as legal advisor to ARMO.
About Eli Lilly and Company
Founded in 1934, Eli Lilly and Company is a company that engages in the research and development, manufacture, marketing, and sale of pharmaceutical products. Headquartered in UK, Eli Lilly offers pharmaceutical products in the fields of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, endocrine, musculoskeletal disease, neuroscience, oncology, and urology.
About ARMO BioSciences
Headquartered in USA, ARMO BioSciences operates as a bio- technology company that develops immunotherapies for the treatment of cancer, cardiovascular, fibrosis, and inflammation diseases