Takeda Pharmaceutical to buy Ariad in $5.2 billion cash deal

Japanese drugmaker Takeda Pharmaceutical will buy U.S. cancer drug developer Ariad Pharmaceuticals in a $5.2 billion deal that the companies expect to close by the end of February.

Takeda will pay $24 in cash for each Ariad share, a premium of nearly 75 percent to the stock’s $13.74 closing price Friday. Ariad said Monday the deal still needs regulatory approval.

Ariad shares are soaring in premarket trading.

Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Ariad Pharmaceuticals Inc. develops treatments for rare forms of leukemia and lung cancer.

The drugmaker drew criticism from members of Congress last fall over price hikes for the leukemia treatment Iclusig. The company raised the cost of the drug four times in 2016 to an almost $200,000 yearly cost, an increase of more than $80,000 over the last several years.

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