US drugmaker Pfizer is close to a deal to buy Global Blood Therapeutics, which produces a recently approved drug for sickle cell disease, for $5 billion, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Pfizer, one of the top makers of Covid-19 vaccines, hopes to complete talks with GBT within days, the paper said Friday, citing people close to negotiations.
But it said other takeover candidates remain in the running.
GBT’s sickle cell treatment, marketed as Oxbryta, was approved in 2019 for individuals over the age of 12, but received federal approval in December for children ages four to 11. The blood disease affects millions.
The sale of Oxbryta helped the lab generate $55 million in first-quarter revenue (up 41 percent), while the company posted a net loss of $81.4 million.
GBT, based in San Francisco, California, will release its second-quarter results on Monday.
Pfizer saw its second-quarter sales rise 47 percent — to a record $27.74 billion — boosted by sales of its Covid vaccine and pills.
Net profit rose 78 percent to $9.9 billion.
GBT shares on the New York Stock Exchange rose 33.03 percent to $63.84 at the close on Friday, for a market cap of more than $4 billion.
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