Shares in cannabinoid life sciences specialist GW Pharma have soared, Wednesday, following its agreement to be acquired by Jazz Pharmaceuticals Plc (Nasdaq: JAZZ). In a cash-and-stock deal valued at $7.2 billion.
Under the terms of the deal, Jazz Pharma will pay $200 per share in cash and $20 in stock for each share owned, or a premium of about 50% over GW’s closing price on Tuesday, and 60% over its 30-day volume weighted average price.
GW Pharma shares soared 46% premarket after resuming trade following a halt for the news. Jazz shares were down 2.7% premarket, but have gained 11% in the last 12 months, while the S&P 500 SPX, 0.01% has gained 18%.
The deal is expected to close in the second quarter, to boost profit in the first year after close and to drive double-digit revenue growth.
GW is a global leader in discovering, developing, manufacturing and commercializing novel, regulatory approved therapeutics from its proprietary cannabinoid product platform to address a broad range of diseases.
The company’s lead product, Epidiolex® (cannabidiol) oral solution, is approved in patients one-year and older for the treatment of seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome (LGS), Dravet Syndrome and Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC), all of which are rare diseases characterized by severe early-onset epilepsy. Epidiolex was the first plant-derived cannabinoid medicine ever approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This product has also been approved, under the tradename Epidyolex®, by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in patients two years of age and older for the adjunctive treatment of seizures associated with LGS and Dravet syndrome in conjunction with clobazam and is under EMA review for the treatment of seizures associated with TSC.
In addition to the approved indications for Epidiolex, there are considerable opportunities to pursue other indications within the epilepsy field, including other treatment-resistant epilepsies where significant unmet needs of patients exist.
Beyond Epidiolex, GW has a scientific platform and deep innovative pipeline of cannabinoid product candidates, as well as highly specialized manufacturing expertise, developed over two decades of pioneering and building leadership in cannabinoid science. This pipeline includes nabiximols, for which the company is in Phase 3 trials to seek FDA approval for treatment of spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury, as well as earlier-stage cannabinoid product candidates for autism and schizophrenia.
“Over the last two decades, GW has built an unparalleled global leadership position in cannabinoid science, including the successful launch of Epidiolex, a breakthrough product within the field of epilepsy, and a diverse and robust neuroscience pipeline. We believe that Jazz is an ideal growth partner that is committed to supporting our commercial efforts, as well as ongoing clinical and research programs,” said Justin Gover, CEO of GW Pharmaceuticals. “We have a shared vision of developing and commercializing innovative medicines that address significant unmet needs in neuroscience and an approach of putting patients first. Together, we will have an opportunity to reach and impact more patients through a broader portfolio of neuroscience-focused therapies than ever before.”
Jazz Pharmaceuticals is a global biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing and commercializing life-changing medicines that transform the lives of patients with serious diseases — often with limited or no options. The company has a diverse portfolio of marketed medicines and novel product candidates, from early- to late-stage development, in key therapeutic areas, including sleep and movement disorders, and in oncology, including hematologic malignancies and solid tumours.
“Jazz is proud of our leadership position in sleep medicines and rapidly growing oncology business. We are excited to add GW’s industry-leading cannabinoid platform, innovative pipeline and products, which will strengthen and broaden our neuroscience portfolio, further diversify our revenue and drive sustainable, long-term value creation opportunities,” said Bruce Cozadd, chairman and CEO of Jazz Pharmaceuticals. “We are joining two teams that share a passion for, and track record of, developing differentiated therapies that advance science and transform the lives of patients. This will help facilitate a successful integration and bring added capabilities to Jazz. Given the strength of our balance sheet and the meaningful financial drivers of the transaction, we are confident in the value we can deliver to both companies’ shareholders and patients. We look forward to welcoming the GW team to Jazz to build an even stronger company.”
Source | PR Newswire