Merck has completed the acquisition of US-based biopharmaceutical company ArQule in a deal valued at around $2.7bn.
Via its subsidiary, Merck has completed the cash tender offer to acquire all the outstanding shares of ArQule at a purchase price of $20 per share.
Merck said that the 103,394,298 shares of common stock of ArQule have been validly tendered and not withdrawn from the tender offer, representing around 75.3% of the outstanding common stock of ArQule on a fully diluted basis.
In December 2019, Merck, through its subsidiary, commenced a cash tender offer to acquire all outstanding shares of common stock of ArQule.
Merck has concluded the acquisition of ArQule through a merger of its wholly-owned subsidiary, following the completion of the tender offer.
ArQule now operates as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Merck, as the deal concluded.
ArQule is primarily focused on the research and development of targeted therapeutics for the treatment of cancers and rare diseases.
The company aims to discover, develop and commercialise novel small molecule drugs in areas of high unmet need.
ArQule’s clinical-stage pipeline includes four drug candidates, including ARQ 531, ARQ 751, miransertib (ARQ 092) and derazantinib.
The ARQ 531 is a novel, oral Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor, which is currently in a phase 2 dose expansion trial to treat B-cell malignancies, while the ARQ 751 is a next-generation potent and selective AKT inhibitor that is under phase 1 study to treat patients with solid tumours with AKT1 and PI3K mutations.
Miransertib (ARQ 092) is a potent and selective inhibitor of the AKT serine/threonine kinase that is under a registrational trial with cohorts in Proteus syndrome and PROS, while derazantinib is a multi-kinase inhibitor designed to selectively block the fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) family.
In November 2019, COI Pharmaceuticals announced that Merck agreed to acquire Calporta Therapeutics in a deal valued at around $576m.
Calporta develops selective small-molecule agonists to TRPML1 (transient receptor potential cation channel, mucolipin subfamily).