Celgene in Talks to Buy Juno Therapeutics

By Jonathan D. Rockoff, Dana Cimilluca and Dana Mattioli Features Dow Jones Newswires

Celgene Corp. is in talks to buy biotechnology company Juno Therapeutics Inc., just days after announcing another major deal to bolster its portfolio of blood-cancer drugs.

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The talks could produce a deal in the coming weeks, assuming they don't fall apart, people familiar with the matter said. Terms of the possible deal couldn't be learned. Juno had a market value of about $5.5 billion as of Tuesday afternoon.

A deal would come on the heels of Celgene's agreement just over a week ago to buy closely held Impact Biomedicines. Celgene is to pay $1.1 billion upfront and could make billions of dollars of additional payments if Impact hits certain milestones.

Celgene, based in Summit, N.J., is one of the biggest U.S. biotech companies. It's known for its blood-cancer drugs, notably top-selling product Revlimid, but has been trying to diversify its portfolio before Revlimid loses patent protection in the U.S.

Seattle-based Juno would further boost Celgene in the market for drugs treating multiple myeloma and other blood cancers, a market that the company helped establish.

Write to Jonathan D. Rockoff at Jonathan.Rockoff@wsj.com, Dana Cimilluca at dana.cimilluca@wsj.com and Dana Mattioli at dana.mattioli@wsj.com

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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 16, 2018 17:17 ET (22:17 GMT)