NEW YORK, December 17, 2015: Morgan Lewis represented Acerta Pharma B.V. (Acerta), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, in the up to $7 billion sale of its company to AstraZeneca. The transaction provides AstraZeneca with Acerta’s potential best-in-class irreversible oral Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk) inhibitor, acalabrutinib (ACP-196), currently in Phase III development for B-cell blood cancers and in Phase I/II clinical trials in multiple solid tumors.
Announced today, the transaction will be accounted for as a business combination and is expected to be complete by the end of the first quarter of 2016, subject to regulatory and customary closing conditions. Upon closing, AstraZeneca will acquire 55% ownership of Acerta for $4 billion with an option for AstraZeneca to acquire the remaining 45% ownership in Acerta for up to $3 billion.
The Morgan Lewis team advising the client and on the transaction was led by partners Emilio Ragosa, Steve Navarro, and Jedd Wider. Team members included partners Louis Beardell, Jennifer Breen, Jay Carrigan, David Clough, Richard de Bodo, Charles Engros, John Gorman, Linda Griggs, Brian Herman, Eric Kraeutler, Ben Pensak, Zaitun Poonja, Harry Robins, James Sims, Robert Smyth, Iain Wright, and Richard Zarin. Morgan Lewis consultant Paul Ranson contributed to the effort in addition to associates Mian Abad, Daniel Belostock, Jacqueline Berman, James Collins, Martin d’Halluin, Maria Di Lauro, Michael Kummer, Marc Leone, Zuza Savoff, Anthony Ugwu-Oju, Fred Vogt, and Cosimo Zavaglia.