This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

The Deal: Sanofi to Take 12% of Alnylam

LONDON (The Deal) -- French drug giant Sanofi on Monday, Jan. 13, expanded a rare-disease alliance with Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (ALNY) that would leave the French drug giant with a minority Alnylam stake and access to the target's portfolio through 2020.

Sanofi, of Paris, said it would pay $700 million, or about $80 per share, to buy 12% of Cambridge, Mass.-based Alnylam. The price is a 21% premium to the stock's Friday close.

The deal was struck through Sanofi's Genzyme biotech division, which it bought in 2011 for $20.1 billion. The agreement builds on a 2012 cooperation in which Genzyme is pitching in on the development and marketing in Asia Pacific of Alnylam's patisiran treatment for a rare nervous system disorder.

Sanofi will now have the right to market patisiran, which passed Phase II testing in November for the treatment of transthyretin (TTR)-familial amyloid, everywhere but western Europe and North America. The two will also co-develop a similar treatment for another nervous system disorder -- familial amyloid cardiomyopathy -- in North America and western Europe while Genzyme has exclusive rights to sell the drug in other regions.

The deal also gives Sanofi the right of first refusal on future Alnylam drugs to treat rare genetic diseases for development and commercialization outside of North America and Western Europe through to 2020.

"This collaboration is an important building block for our future. It strengthens our pipeline and provides us with the opportunity to meet the needs of patients with rare diseases around the world," said Genzyme CEO and President David Meeker in a statement.

Sanofi is just the latest drug company to tie up with Alnylam. The company creates treatments based on an RNAi technology that, when discovered in the last decade, won the scientists the 2006 Nobel Prize for Medicine. The treatments prohibit the production of proteins within a cell, most notably the faulty proteins that cause disease.

Novartis and Switzerland's Roche were early believers in the company. Novartis bought 13.3% as part of a five-year, 2005 deal while Roche picked up 5% in 2007. Both bailed just years later, rattling Alnylam, which championed other cooperations where it was sharing its technology with major drug companies such as Sanofi.

Sanofi investors pushed the company's shares down 1.7%, or 1.27 euros, to 72.74 euros ($99.35) in morning trading in Paris.

Although Phase II trials of Alnylam products look promising, the skepticism over the future of RNAi technology can be seen the price paid in a recent acquisition by Alnylam itself.

Earlier this month, the company agreed to acquire rival Sirna Therpeutics from Merck for as much as $290 million, whereas Merck bought the company in 2006 for $1.1 billion.

-- Written by Andrew Bulkeley

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,979.13 +59.54 0.35%
S&P 500 1,986.51 +4.91 0.25%
NASDAQ 4,526.4820 -1.0320 -0.02%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs