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ARIA Stock Gets Big Boost From JAZZ Buyout Rumors

Announcement on partnership or buyout expected


Ariad Pharmaceuticals (ARIA) is getting a boost from buyout rumors, sending ARIA stock up 6% in trading.

Online business cites are buzzing on speculation that Jazz Pharmaceuticals (JAZZ) is considering a buyout upward of $20/share — a big lift considering  yesterday’s close of $7.60.

The potential acquisition is then valued at about $3.6 billion, with analysts projections for ARIA’s 2014 and 2015 revenue estimates at $87.9M and $158.4M, respectively.

Just yesterday, DealReporter reported that Ariad is looking for a partner in Japan for Iclusig, with an announcement perhaps coming soon.

“In addition to actively pursuing distribution agreements for Iclusig in central and eastern Europe, as well as in the Middle East, just as we have done in Australia, we plan to partner Iclusig in Japan and perhaps in other countries in Asia,” said CEO Harvey Berger in a call with investors. “We have no timeframe now on when we might announce a partnership, but we consider this decision as an important step in building shareholder value.”

The buzz comes about as Ariad is reveling in a recent success, notes the Daily Mail.

As soon as Ariad announced the commercial availability of Ponatinib for adult patients with refractory chronic myeloid leukemia, global pharmaceutical players were all over it.

A partnership or buyout is just what the stock needs right now (via MarketWatch).

Earlier in the week the company reported fourth quarter 2013 loss of 40 cents per share, wider than the year-ago loss of 36 cents per share but narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 46 cents per share. Fourth quarter revenues were $8.4 million, compared to $0.07 million in the year-ago quarter. Revenues surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $6 million.

Jazz Pharmaceuticals, formerly Azur Pharma Public Limited Company, is a specialty biopharmaceutical company. Last month, JAZZ acquired 98% interest in Gentium, an Italian manufacturer of biotechnology products.

ARIA stock is down some 60% from this time last year.

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