The UK Competition and Markets Authority have cleared AstraZeneca’s proposed acquisition of Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Alexion). As a result, the acquisition is expected to close on 21 July 2021.
Following closing, the new AstraZeneca shares issued to Alexion shareholders will be admitted to listing on the premium listing segment of the official list of the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and to the secondary listing on Nasdaq Stockholm. In addition, the new AstraZeneca American Depositary Shares (ADSs) will be admitted on the Nasdaq Stock Market. Trading on the London Stock Exchange’s main market for listed securities, Nasdaq Stockholm and the Nasdaq Stock Market, is expected to commence on 22 July 2021. In addition, the Alexion shares will be de-listed from the Nasdaq Stock Market. They will be deregistered under the Exchange Act as soon as practicable following completion of the acquisition.
Marc Dunoyer, executive director and chief financial officer, said: “We are very pleased to have secured this critical final clearance from the UK Competition and Markets Authority for the acquisition of Alexion. We look forward to the imminent closing of the transaction so that we may pursue our shared ambition to bring more innovative medicines to patients worldwide and begin AstraZeneca’s next chapter of growth.”
The proposed acquisition, first announced in December 2020, will enhance the Company’s scientific presence in immunology by adding Alexion’s innovative complement-technology platforms and robust pipeline. Rare diseases represent a high-growth opportunity with rapid innovation and significant unmet medical needs. Shareholders of both companies overwhelmingly voted in support of the transaction on 11 May 2021.
Subject to completing the acquisition, a group focusing on rare diseases will be created. This group will be named ‘Alexion, AstraZeneca Rare Disease’, and will be headquartered in Boston, US.
Over 7,000 rare diseases are known today, and only approximately 5% have treatments approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. Demand in medicines for rare diseases is forecasted to grow by a low double-digit percentage in the future.