Mega Deal Abbvie to Acquire Pharmacyclics

Editor: M.A. Manja Wühr

AbbVie and Pharmacyclics have signed an agreement under which AbbVie will acquire Pharmacyclics including its blockbuster product Imbruvica. This acquisition will help Abbvie secure future cash flows as humira biosimilars loom, says Global Data Analyst.

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AbbVie Acquires Pharmacyclics to Help Secure Future Cash Flows as Humira Biosimilars Loom, says Global Data Analyst.
AbbVie Acquires Pharmacyclics to Help Secure Future Cash Flows as Humira Biosimilars Loom, says Global Data Analyst.
(Picture: Abbvie/Gerhard Kopatz)

North Chicago/USA, Sunnyvale/USA, London/ UK – Abbvie and Pharmacyclics have announced a definitive agreement under which Abbvie will acquire Pharmacyclics, and its flagship asset Imbruvica (ibrutinib), a highly effective treatment for hematologic malignancies. Under the terms of the transaction, Abbvie will pay 261.25 US-Dollar per share comprised of a mix of cash and Abbvie equity. The transaction values Pharmacyclics at approximately 21 billion US-Dollar and was approved by the Boards of Directors of both companies.

Imbruvica is a Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor approved for use in four indications to treat three different types of blood cancers including chronic lymphocytic leukemia, mantle cell lymphoma and Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia. Imbruvica received initial U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in 2013 and is the only therapy to have received three Breakthrough Therapy designations by the FDA. It is currently approved in more than 40 countries. Significant opportunity exists with further Imbruvica indications, including solid tumors, the potential to leverage Abbvie's immunology expertise for the development of Pharmacyclics' immunology program, and advance Abbvie's efforts in hematologic malignancies.


Richard A. Gonzalez, chairman and chief executive officer, Abbvie: "The acquisition of Pharmacyclics is a strategically compelling opportunity. The addition of Pharmacyclics' talented and innovative team will add enormous value to Abbvie. Its flagship product, Imbruvica, is not only complementary to Abbvie's oncology pipeline, it has demonstrated strong clinical efficacy across a broad range of hematologic malignancies and raised the standard of care for patients."

Bob Duggan, chairman and chief executive officer, Pharmacyclics: "Team Pharmacyclics is honored and enthusiastic to join the AbbVie organization. We share a common purpose. Together and as one, our focus remains to create a remarkable difference for patient betterment around the world."

Joshua Owide, GlobalData’s Director of Healthcare Industry Dynamics: "Abbvie’s acquisition of Pharmacyclics, valued at $21 billion, will help the company alleviate its dependency on Humira, which accounted for 62% of its total revenues in 2014, up from 57% in 2013. This is a major step for Abbvie following the terminated Shire deal, as the rest of Abbvie’s business is faltering. The company’s pharmaceutical revenues, excluding Humira, shrank by $467 million last year. To compound this, the threat of Humira biosimilars is looming ever nearer, with Amgen, Boehringer Ingelheim, Pfizer, Fujifilm Kyowa Kirin Biologics, Sandoz and Samsung all in late-stage clinical development with their respective adalimumab biosimilars. These are expected to have a major impact on Humira sales following its anticipated 2018 US patent expiration."

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