Glaxo buys stake in Genmab
COPENHAGEN -- Danish biotech Genmab A/S signed a deal yesterday worth up to $2.1 billion with pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline PLC for the global commercialization of a leukemia treatment.
The agreement for the HuMax-CD20 antibody, in phase 3 clinical trials, includes an initial license fee of $102 million, with Glaxo buying a stake of just over 10 percent in Genmab and milestone payments totaling $1.6 billion.
GlaxoSmithKline will invest $359 million for the 4.47 million Genmab shares.
Analysts said the value of the deal was much higher than expected, and could mean that Genmab will be profitable as early as next year.
"This is fantastic," said Carsten Madsen, an analyst at Danske Bank. "It's a major deal with a well-established pharma player and it's difficult to find anything bad about this deal."
SNS Securities analyst Marcel Wijma said the highest analyst expectation was for a $650 million deal, including milestone and upfront payments, and his own expectation was for a $500 million agreement.
US-traded shares of Genmab closed unchanged at $58.40. Shares of GlaxoSmithKline, the world's second-largest pharmaceutical company, fell 0.9 percent to close at $26 on the London Stock Exchange.