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2022-08-15| M&A

Ipsen Completes $247 Million Oncology Buyout Of Epizyme

by Joy Lin
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French drugmaker Ipsen has completed its $247 million takeover of US-based Epizyme, bringing in FDA-approved cancer medication, Tazverik (tazemetostat), as well as a pipeline of oncology and epigenetic assets. 

Originally announced in June, the acquisition saw Ipsen acquire all shares in Epizyme for $1.45 per share plus a contingent value right of $1.00 per share. 

Related article:Potential $1 billion Acquisition of TeneoTwo by AstraZeneca comes to Fruition

Treatments For Lymphoma and Myeloma

Joining Ipsen’s oncology portfolio is Tazverik, an EZH2 inhibitor granted accelerated approval by the US FDA in 2020. Tazverik is currently indicated for patients with relapsed or refractory follicular lymphoma (FL) who have EZH2 mutations and have received at least two systemic therapies. It is also approved for FL patients with no alternative treatment options and patients with advanced epithelioid sarcoma that cannot be surgically removed. 

Besides Tazverik, Ipsen will also get Epizyme’s oral SETD2 inhibitor candidate, EZM0414, which was granted FDA Fast Track Status in 2021 and is currently in a Phase 1/1b in multiple myeloma and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. 

Lastly, Ipsen will take over a number of preclinical programs focusing on epigenetics, an approach where chromatin-modifying proteins modulate DNA and its associated proteins. 

Cost Reductions And Job Cuts

By acquiring Epizyme, Ipsen will be responsible for expanding indications for Tazverik, which is currently held back by small patient populations. 

The drug earned just $31 million for Epizyme last year, compared to a net loss of $250 million which saw the company slash part of its workforce and end clinical studies in an effort to cut costs. 

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