Why Gilead Sciences Is Buying CymaBay Therapeutics for $4.3 Billion

Key takeaways

  • Gilead Sciences is purchasing CymaBay Therapeutics, giving Gilead access to CymaBay's lead treatment for liver disease.
  • Gilead will pay $4.3 billion, or $32.50 per share, in cash for CymaBay, a 26.5% premium to CymaBay's closing price on Friday.
  • CymaBay shares soared Monday to a record high following the news.

Shares of CymaBay Therapeutics (CBAY) hit a record high Monday after Gilead Sciences (GILD) announced it was buying the developer of drugs for liver and other chronic diseases for $4.3 billion.

Gilead said Monday it would pay $32.50 per share in cash for CymaBay, a 26.5% premium to CymaBay's closing price on Friday.

CymaBay's lead investigational product, seladelpar, is a treatment for primary biliary cholangitis (PBC), an autoimmune disease that affects the bile ducts of the liver. It achieved statistical significance on its primary endpoints in a phase 3 trial.

The companies noted that the Food and Drug Administration had completed review of its application and accepted a New Drug Application for seladelpar, granting it priority review. A decision from the pharmaceutical regulator is expected to be made in August.

Daniel O'Day, CEO of Gilead, said that by joining forces with CymaBay, “we have the potential to address a significant unmet need for people living with PBC and expand our existing broad portfolio transformational therapies.

The transaction is expected to close this quarter.

CymaBay shares were up 25% at $32.10 per share around 1:20 p.m. ET Monday after the acquisition was announced. Gilead shares rose 0.8% to $74.29.

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