AbbVie to acquire Cerevel for $8.7 billion; deal 'makes sense' say analysts

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AbbVie to acquire Cerevel for $8.7 billion; deal 'makes sense' say analysts
(Updated - December 7, 2023 5:18 AM EST)

AbbVie Inc . (NYSE: ABBV ) announced it will acquire Cerevel Therapeutics (CERE) in a deal that will the former acquire the latter's robust neuroscience pipeline of multiple clinical-stage and preclinical candidates.

The acquisition enhances AbbVie's neuroscience lineup by introducing a diverse array of potentially superior assets. Assets with the potential to revolutionize treatment standards for psychiatric and neurological disorders, addressing crucial unmet needs among patients.

"Our existing neuroscience portfolio and our combined pipeline with Cerevel represents a significant growth opportunity well into the next decade," said AbbVie CEO, Richard Gonzalez.

Shares of CERE are up over 14% in pre market.

According to the agreement, AbbVie is set to purchase all of Cerevel's outstanding shares at $45.00 per share in cash. This acquisition places Cerevel's total equity value at around $8.7 billion.

The boards of directors of both entities have endorsed the deal. It is anticipated to conclude by mid-2024 pending approval from Cerevel's shareholders, regulatory clearances, and meeting other standard closing prerequisites.

"Cerevel has always been committed to transforming what is possible in neuroscience. With AbbVie's long-standing expertise in developing and commercializing medicines on a global scale, Cerevel's novel therapies will be well positioned to reach more people living with neuroscience diseases," said Cerevel Therapeutics CEO, Ron Renaud.

Analysts believe the strategic fit is clear and, although the acquisition may modestly value full pipeline potential for Cerevel, there is plenty of risk with readouts by mid’24 of tavapadon (tava’) in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and darigabat (darig’) in focal onset seizures (FOS), as well as anticipated progress with Karuna’s KarXT to justify the current bid, in their view.

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