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EU: Roche extends US$4.3B Spark tender offer again

 |  July 31, 2019

Roche, the Switzerland-based drugmaker, announced says it has extended its US$4.3 billion offer to buy all shares of Philadelphia-based Spark Therapeutics Inc. from investors past its July 31 target date until September 3, so US and UK regulators can finish their longer-than-expected review on the combination.

“The offer was extended to provide additional time for the US Federal Trade Commission and the UK Competition and Markets Authority to complete their previously disclosed reviews” of the deal, Roche and Spark said in a this joint statement.

The companies had hoped to combine Roche, which makes the hemophilia treatment Hemlibra among many other drugs, with Spark, one of several biotech companies developing a gene therapy hemophilia cure among its projects, by last spring.

The $4.3 billion sale, first announced in February, was the biggest payout for a gene therapy company since doctors at research hospitals including Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania began gene therapy trials in the 1990s.

But Roche and Spark have had to delay the deal closing several times, as U.S. and UK regulators consider how the combination will change the companies’ incentives and plans to speed product development, and how that could affect prices and availability of their therapies.

Full Content: Fierce Pharma

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