Sept 17 Clovis Oncology Inc, a
cancer-focused drugmaker, is considering selling itself, three
people familiar with the deal told Reuters this week.
Clovis has tapped Credit Suisse AG and J.P. Morgan
to help find a buyer, according to one of the sources,
who wished to remain anonymous because the source was not
permitted to speak to the media.
Bloomberg first reported news of the possible deal earlier
on Tuesday, after which shares of Clovis, which has a market
value of about $2 billion, jumped 21 percent. The shares later
fell back to trade at $72.03, up nearly 7 percent on the Nasdaq.
Clovis spokeswoman Breanna Burkart said the sources cited in
the Bloomberg report were not from within the company. On
whether Clovis was exploring options, Burkart said the company
does not comment on market rumors.
Credit Suisse and J.P. Morgan both declined to comment.
Excluding Tuesday's gains, shares of the Boulder,
Colorado-based company had soared more than 300 percent since
the beginning of this year, in line with a spate of positive
news about the company's cancer drugs pipeline.
In June, Clovis stock doubled in value after initial results
of an early-stage trial of its experimental lung cancer drug
showed a reduction in patient tumor sizes.
The biotechnology sector has been rife with dealmaking over
the last several months. Cancer, in particular, has attracted
increased investment from biotechnology and pharmaceutical
companies in recent years as breakthroughs in understanding the
genetic basis of the disease have paved the way for development
of several new and innovative medicines.
Acquisitions in the oncology sector include the $886 million
buyout of Astex Pharmaceuticals Inc by Japan's Otsuka Holdings
Co earlier this month.
In August, Amgen Inc agreed to buy Onyx
Pharmaceuticals Inc for $10.4 billion, the
fifth-largest biotechnology deal in history.
(Reporting by Zeba Siddiqui in Bangalore and Jessica Toonkel in
New York; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)