Financial update on Harpoon Therapeutics acquisition by Merck (MSD)

Arix Bioscience plc (“Arix” or the “Company”) (LSE: ARIX), a global venture capital company focused on investing in breakthrough biotechnology companies, provides a financial update on its expected returns from the Harpoon Therapeutics (NASDAQ: HARP) (“Harpoon”) acquisition by Merck (NYSE: MRK) following the announcement that Merck (known as MSD outside the United States and Canada), through a subsidiary, agreed to acquire Harpoon for $23.00 per share in cash for an approximate total equity value of $680 million.

The sale of Harpoon is expected to deliver net proceeds to Arix of approximately $18.9 million (£14.9 million ). This equates to a £10.9 million (8p per share) increase in Arix’s £4 million prior holding value of its Harpoon interests and, when combined with prior realisations of £12.5 million, represents an overall return of 1.2x on the £23.3 million total capital invested in Harpoon since Arix first invested. 

Peregrine Moncreiffe, Chairman of Arix, commented: “Arix has been an investor in Harpoon Therapeutics since 2017, and it is great to see a company that we have been a part of since the early stages move through the clinic and receive recognition for the platform they have worked hard to develop. This acquisition by Merck provides significant potential for bringing life-saving treatment to cancer patients as they enhance their oncology pipeline. In what has been a difficult time across the biotech sector we see this M&A activity as a further sign of market recovery.”

The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2024.

  • At prevailing GBP/USD FX rate on 18 January 2024. Based on $23 per share for Arix’s public shareholding, net $13 per share for Arix’s warrant shares and $3,500 per Series A Preferred share, plus accrued interest at 8%
  • £4.0 million valuation at 30 June 2023, as reported at interim results 2023, for listed and Series A Preferred shares

Join our audience of healthcare industry professionals

Join our audience of healthcare industry professionals