Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) is a global healthcare solutions provider that has been working towards bringing forward medicine and vaccines for some of the world’s most challenging diseases for more than a century. They are committed to increasing health care access and continue to be at the leading edge of research. Merck has the industry’s largest immuno-oncology clinical research program.
Merck continued on its significant M&A path recently and confirmed that it will buy ArQule Inc. (ARQL) for $2.7B. This is will add the drug developer’s experimental blood cancer therapy which targets genetic mutations, a potential alternative to chemotherapy and its adverse side effects. Merck offered $20/share, much more than ArQule’s closing price last week.
Roger Perlmutter, president of Merck Research Laboratories informed ArQule’s focus on precision medicine has resulted in multiple oral kinase inhibitors, rugs inhibiting cancer-causing proteins, that have “novel and important properties”.
Currently, Merck’s Keytruda, which treats numerous types of cancer, is the company’s highest growth driver. Also, Merck is relying heavily on its existing and upcoming deals with Peloton Therapeutics for $1.05 billion in cash and Tilos Therapeutics for up to $773 million.
The deal is expected to close early in the first quarter of 2020.
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