Roche Gets Green Light From US and Europe Regulators To Purchase Gene Therapy Group Spark For US$ 4.3 Billion
Pharmaceuticals giant Roche
said it had received the necessary approval from competition authorities to acquire US gene-therapy group Spark
, after the two companies reached a multibillion-dollar deal earlier this year.
Incorporated in 2013, Spark
Therapeutics specialises in a new and growing segment of medicine for genetic diseases such as blindness, haemophilia, and neurodegenerative conditions.
The FTC or US Federal Trade Commission "unconditionally cleared Roche
's pending acquisition of Spark
", the Swiss company said in a media statement that was sent to Thailand Medical
News on Monday.
"All antitrust approvals required to complete the offer have now been received," it said, after confirming earlier Monday that Britain's Competition and Markets Authority had also cleared the pending acquisition.
sealed the deal worth $4.3 billion (3.7 billion euros) in February.
In another separate statement, the FTC said it had made its decision "following an exhaustive, 10-month investigation" into potential competitive harm that could result from the move.
's biggest treatment under study is a therapy for haemophilia
, a disorder where blood does not clot properly to stop bleeding.
"A key question in the investigation was whether Roche
would have the incentive to delay or discontinue Spark's developmental gene therapy for hemophilia A
," the FTC said.
"The evidence... did not indicate that Roche
would have the incentive to delay or terminate" Spark
's therapy development, or affect Roche
's haemophilia drug Hemlibra
, it concluded.
stocks rose 1.18 percent to 304.10 Swiss Francs Monday on the Swiss stock exchange.
wants to buy U.S.-based Spark to gain a foothold in gene therapy and add to its growing portfolio of hemophilia A
products. Its Hemlibra
product, an anti-hemophilia A drug, is due to surpass $1 billion sales this year.
sufferers lack a protein that helps blood to clot, putting them at risk of serious health complications including internal bleeding, joint damage or death.
has traditionally been one of the most expensive and for companies, most lucrative treatment areas, with clotting factors running into the millions of dollars annually for some cases.