Stock Update (NASDAQ:ARIA): Ariad Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Enters Agreement to Be Acquired by Takeda Pharmaceutical for $5.2 Billion


Ariad Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ARIA) announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd (ADR) (OTCMKTS:TKPYY) under which Takeda will acquire all of the outstanding shares in ARIAD for $24.00 per share in cash, or a total enterprise value of approximately $5.2 billion, representing a premium of approximately 75 percent over ARIAD’s closing price on January 6, 2017.

Under the terms of the agreement, ARIAD stockholders will receive $24.00 in cash for each share of ARIAD common stock they own. The transaction has been approved unanimously by the boards of directors of both companies, and is expected to close by the end of February 2017, subject to required regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

Paris Panayiotopoulos, President and Chief Executive Officer of ARIAD, said, “We are very pleased to combine with Takeda, which will allow us to not only accelerate our mission to discover, develop and deliver precision therapies to patients with rare cancers, but also deliver meaningful value to our shareholders through a substantial cash premium. This exciting transaction is a testament to the hard work and dedication of ARIAD’s talented team of employees. We have tremendous respect for Takeda, and I believe our shared commitment to innovation and research-driven cultures will provide for a smooth transition.”

Alexander J. Denner, Ph.D., Chairman of the ARIAD Board of Directors, said: “This transaction is a great outcome for ARIAD shareholders and brings hope to improve the lives of many cancer patients. It has been a pleasure to work with our outstanding management team and, on behalf of the board of directors, I extend our deepest gratitude to everyone at ARIAD for their unrelenting dedication.”

Dr. Denner continued, “The transaction also underscores the tremendous value that shareholder activism can create for shareholders, patients and society. While ARIAD’s stock price was collapsing and many investors were abandoning the company, Sarissa Capital saw a company with important drugs and innovation and stepped in to become one of ARIAD’s largest shareholders. However, many things needed to be fixed before the value could be realized. With a new board and management team, ARIAD was able to focus on optimal capital allocation and operational excellence. As a result, the company created meaningful shareholder value and advance the options for those suffering from rare cancers.”

“The acquisition of ARIAD is a unique opportunity that will enable us to positively impact the lives of more patients worldwide, advance our strategic priorities and generate attractive returns for our shareholders,” said Christophe Weber, president and chief executive officer of Takeda. “This is a very exciting time for Takeda as we will broaden our hematology portfolio and transform our global solid tumor franchise through the addition of two innovative targeted therapies. Opportunities to acquire such high-quality, complementary targeted therapies do not come often, and we are very excited about the potential for this transaction to benefit patients, our shareholders and other stakeholders.”

Under the terms of the agreement, the acquisition is structured as an all cash tender offer for all of the outstanding shares of ARIAD common stock, followed by a merger in which remaining shares of ARIAD would be converted into the right to receive the same $24.00 cash per share price paid in the tender offer.

The transaction is subject to the tender of a majority of ARIAD common stock on a fully diluted basis as well as other customary closing conditions, including expiration of the applicable waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 and the antitrust laws of applicable foreign jurisdictions. The transaction is expected to close by the end of February 2017.

Takeda Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., a wholly owned subsidiary of Takeda, has established Kiku Merger Co., Inc. to effect the transaction.

JPMorgan, Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Lazard acted as financial advisors to ARIAD Pharmaceuticals and Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP acted as the Company’s legal advisor. Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP acted as legal advisor to Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited.Evercore Partners acted as financial advisor to Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited. (Original Source)

Shares of Ariad Pharmaceuticals are up over 70% to $23.72. ARIA has a 1-year high of $14.42 and a 1-year low of $4.37. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $12.90 and its 200-day moving average is $10.93.

On the ratings front, Ariad Pharmaceuticals has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on December 9, William Blair analyst Y Katherine Xu reiterated a Buy rating on ARIA, with a price target of $15, which represents a potential upside of 9% from where the stock is currently trading. Separately, on November 30, JMP’s Michael King reiterated a Hold rating on the stock .

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Y Katherine Xu and Michael King have a yearly average return of 0.6% and a loss of -2.4% respectively. Xu has a success rate of 46% and is ranked #2400 out of 4350 analysts, while King has a success rate of 48% and is ranked #3629.

Sentiment on the street is mostly bullish on ARIA stock. Out of 8 analysts who cover the stock, 4 suggest a Buy rating , 2 suggest a Sell and 2 recommend to Hold the stock. The 12-month average price target assigned to the stock is $15.00, which represents a potential upside of 9% from where the stock is currently trading.

ARIAD Pharmaceuticals, Inc. operates as an oncology company, which engages in the discovery, development, and commercialization of small-molecule drugs for the treatment of cancer. Its products include Iclusig and Caregivers.