Pfizer Inc. and Array BioPharma Inc. have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Pfizer will acquire Array, a commercial stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of targeted small molecule medicines to treat cancer and other diseases of high unmet need.
New York City-based Pfizer has agreed to acquire Array of Boulder, CO, for US$48 per share in cash, for a total enterprise value of approximately US$11.4 billion. The boards of directors of both companies have approved the merger.
Pfizer expects to complete the acquisition in the second half of 2019.
Array’s portfolio includes the approved combined use of BRAFTOVI (encorafenib) and MEKTOVI (binimetinib) for the treatment of BRAFV600E or BRAFV600K mutant unresectable or metastatic melanoma. The combination therapy has significant potential for long-term growth via expansion into additional areas of unmet need and is currently being investigated in over 30 clinical trials across several solid tumor indications, including the Phase 3 BEACON trial in BRAF-mutant metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC).
In the U.S., colorectal cancer is the third most common type of cancer in men and women. An estimated 140,250 patients were diagnosed with cancer of the colon or rectum in 2018, and approximately 50,000 are estimated to die of their disease each year.1BRAF mutations are estimated to occur in up to 15 percent of colorectal cancer cases and represent a poor prognosis for these patients.
“Today’s announcement reinforces our commitment to deploy our capital to bring breakthroughs that change patients’ lives while creating shareholder value,” said Albert Bourla, chief executive officer of Pfizer. “The proposed acquisition of Array strengthens our innovative biopharmaceutical business, is expected to enhance its long-term growth trajectory, and sets the stage to create a potentially industry-leading franchise for colorectal cancer alongside Pfizer’s existing expertise in breast and prostate cancers.”
In addition to the combination therapy for BRAF-mutant metastatic melanoma, Array brings a broad pipeline of targeted cancer medicines in development, as well as a portfolio of out-licensed potentially best-in-class and/or first-in-class medicines, which are expected to generate significant royalties over time.
“We are incredibly proud that Pfizer has recognized the value Array has brought to patients and our remarkable legacy discovering and advancing molecules with great potential to impact and extend the lives of patients in critical need,” said Ron Squarer, Array chief executive officer. “Pfizer shares our commitment to patients and a passion for advancing science to develop even more options for individuals with unmet needs. We’re excited our team will have access to world-class resources and a broader research platform to continue this critical work.”