Roche to buy CA-based biotech InterMune in $8.3 billion deal
- On Sunday, Swiss drug giant Roche announced that it will be purchasing CA-based biotech InterMune for $74 per share, or about $8.3 billion.
- InterMune's potential blockbuster pirfenidone is used to treat the potentially fatal lung disease idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
- Worldwide sales of pirfenidone are expected to exceed $1 billion by 2019, according to Bloomberg.
Roche is paying a 38% premium on InterMune's Friday closing price in order to buy the company. Roche executives are painting the acquisition as an opportunity to expand its drug portfolio and nab a therapeutic that faces a dearth of competition on the market.
In a sign of Roche's faith in the biotech, the Swiss drug maker plans to leave the company (mostly) to its own devices. “We rely on the employees from InterMune,” Roche CEO Severin Schwan told Forbes' Matthew Herper in an interview. “They have more than a decade of experience in this very specific field. This is not about cost synergies at all. This is a growth story.”