Japan’s Astellas to Acquire U.S. Drugmaker for 5.9 B. Dlrs

REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
Astellas Pharma’s logo is pictured at its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, December 3, 2019.

Tokyo (Jiji Press)—Japanese drugmaker Astellas Pharma Inc. said Monday that it has agreed to buy U.S. biopharmaceutical startup Iveric Bio Inc. for $5.9 billion in its largest corporate acquisition.

Astellas aims to complete the acquisition of Iveric, which develops ophthalmologic drugs, in July-September following U.S. antitrust and other regulatory screenings.

Astellas will take out bank loans and issue commercial paper to finance the acquisition.

Iveric, listed on the U.S. Nasdaq market, has applied for U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for an age-related macular degeneration drug that is expected to help maintain or restore vision. The screening is expected to finish in August.