The Strategist

US biotech company Illumina buys cancer detection system developer Grail for $8B


09/22/2020 - 03:13



Illumina, a US biotechnology company, buys Grail, a cancer early detection system. The deal is worth $ 8 billion, with $ 3.5 billion to Grail shareholders to receive in cash, and the remaining $ 4.5 billion in Illumina shares.



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Illumina, created back in 1998, specializes in products and services for genetic analysis, sequencing, etc. Grail was created by Illumina itself in 2016 as an independent company; among the startup investors are Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Microsoft creator Bill Gates. 

Illumina itself remained the largest shareholder in Grail, with a 14.5% stake. Grail is developing a new method for detecting cancer diseases - the so-called liquid biopsy, which allows using a blood test in the early stages to identify several dozen types of cancer. These tests should be on the market next year.

Recently, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of deals involving biotech companies has increased significantly. According to Dealogic, from the beginning of the year to the beginning of August, biotech companies raised $ 9.4 billion in IPOs, which is almost one and a half times more than in the entire 2018. This became a record for the amount of IPOs of such companies. 

Recent major deals in this area include the purchase of the American biotechnology company Momenta by Johnson & Johnson for $ 6.5 billion, as well as the acquisition of the American developer of drugs for the treatment of autoimmune diseases Principia Biopharma by the French pharmaceutical company Sanofi for $ 3.7 billion.

source: bloomberg.com




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