Insider account of UCB’s $2.1B deal to buy Ra Pharma spotlights a disciplined M&A strategy — and $120M windfall for execs
When the Ra Pharma team hit San Francisco for JP Morgan last January, they were on a mission: Find a deal for their C5 inhibitor zilucoplan at the threshold of late-stage development for myasthenia gravis. And by the time they were done negotiating nearer the end of the year, the top team could count on a reward of $120 million at the beginning of 2020.
And they had every reason to believe they could get a good number for their asset. The stock $RARX, which had hit rock bottom in the spring of 2018 at just a little over $5 a share, was rebounding and newly produced Phase II data for the lead drug on December 10, 2018, set up a pivotal shot at rivaling Alexion’s cash cow Soliris.
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