Roche to buy InterMune for $8.3B in cash

|About: Roche Holding Ltd ADR (RHHBY)|By:, SA News Editor

Roche (OTCQX:RHHBY, OTCPK:RHHBF) will pay $74/share for InterMune (NASDAQ:ITMN), a 38% premium to its Friday close and 63% higher than Aug. 12 when news of a potential sale emerged.

The deal gives Roche access to pirfenidone, which targets idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, a disease that causes tissue deep in the lungs to become thick and scarred over time. Analysts predict pirfenidone will generate $1B in global sales by 2019.

Pirfenidone joins Roche’s stable of pulmonary treatments, including Pulmozyme for cystic fibrosis, Xolair for asthma, and in-development asthma drug lebrikizumab. Roche plans to speed pirfenidone’s U.S. start-up and help get insurance coverage for the medicine.