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View Count: 120 |  Publish Date: May 28, 2013
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AstraZeneca to pay about $260M for Omthera Pharma
The Associated Press, The Associated PressPosted: Tuesday, May 28, 2013, 8:18 AM
British drugmaker AstraZeneca PLC plans to spend about $260 million on Omthera Pharmaceuticals Inc., a specialty drug developer with only 14 employees but has a potential treatment for patients who have high levels of fats called triglycerides in their blood.
AstraZeneca said Tuesday it will pay $12.70 for each share of Omthera, which priced an initial public offering last month at $8 per share. The offered price represents an 87 percent premium to its closing price Friday of $6.77.
The price of Omthera shares nearly doubled, climbing $6.48 to $13.25, in Tuesday morning trading.
AstraZeneca said the deal totals about $323 million when counting Omtheras cash balances.
Omthera shareholders also could receive additional payments totaling about $120 million if the potential treatment called Epanova reaches development milestones. Those contingent value rights add up to about $4.70 per share
Omthera, based in Princeton, N.J., has completed late-stage testing on Epanova, a fish oil-based treatment. It plans to submit the drug, which is a coated, soft gelatin capsule, to U.S. regulators for approval by the middle of this year.
Its shares closed at $7.43 on April 11, the stocks first day of trading, and had remained below the IPO price until Tuesday morning.
Omthera also said Tuesday its first quarter loss narrowed to $7.3 million, or $3.08 per share, in the quarter that ended March 31. That counts preferred dividend payments and compares to a loss of about $10.1 million, or $6.18 per share, in last years quarter. The company said its research and development expenses fell to $357,000 compared to about $8 million due to the completion of late-stage research on Epanova.
The drug developer listed no revenue in a brief statement on the quarter.
AstraZeneca said last month that its first-quarter profit fell 31 percent as generic competition for bipolar medication Seroquel IR, high blood pressure drug Atacand and cholesterol drug Crestor drove revenue down.
U.S.-traded shares of AstraZeneca rose $1.03, or 2 percent, to $53.20 in morning trading Tuesday. The Associated PressThe Associated Press #post2 .pw-icon.ra1-pw-icon-reddit {background: url() 0px 0px no-repeat !important;width: 60px !important;height: 20px !important;margin-right:8px;}#post2 .pw-icon.ra1-pw-icon-email {background: url() 0px 0px no-repeat !important;width: 71px !important;height: 28px !important;}

Time: 16:31  |  News Code: 269321  |  Site: philly.com
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