Merck & Co. seeks to acquire Seagen in a reportedly $40 billion deal

NEW YORK: Merck & Co. seeks to acquire Seagen in a reportedly $40 billion deal or more, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

While talks could fall apart, the companies are discussing a price near $200 per share and want to come to terms by Merck’s quarterly earnings call on July 28, according to the report.

Seagen shares, which fell to $108 apiece in early May, have surged since the buyout rumors began last month and traded near $180 apiece early Thursday. 

A buyout of at least $40 billion would be the sector’s largest since AstraZeneca’s $39 billion acquisition of Alexion in 2020 and could face hurdles with a Federal Trade Commission that has promised closer scrutiny of pharmaceutical mergers.

At a recent meeting, antitrust specialists voiced concern that deals are giving some drugmakers unfair market power.

Merck & Co., Inc. is an American multinational pharmaceutical company headquartered in Rahway, New Jersey. It is named after the Merck family, which set up Merck Group in Germany in 1668. The company does business as Merck Sharp & Dohme outside the United States and Canada.

Seagen Inc. is an American biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing innovative, empowered monoclonal antibody-based therapies for the treatment of cancer.

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