AbbVie has agreed to acquire ImmunoGen, a biotechnology company developing antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) therapeutics to treat cancer, for a total equity value of around $10.1bn.

Under the terms of the agreement, the US-based drugmaker will purchase all outstanding shares of ImmunoGen for $31.26 per share in cash.

AbbVie will obtain ImmunoGen’s lead candidate Elahere (mirvetuximab soravtansine-gynx), an ADC approved for the treatment of platinum-resistant ovarian cancer (PROC).

The boards of directors of both companies have approved the acquisition, which is expected to be completed in mid-2024.

Its closing is subject to certain customary closing conditions, including receipt of regulatory approvals and approval by ImmunoGen stockholders.

Through the acquisition, the US drugmaker is enabled to advance its commercial and clinical presence in the space of solid tumour therapeutics.

In addition, ImmunoGen’s follow-on pipeline of promising next-generation ADCs will further complement its ADC platform and existing programmes, said AbbVie.

AbbVie chairman and CEO Richard Gonzalez said: “The acquisition of ImmunoGen demonstrates our commitment to deliver on our long-term growth strategy and enables AbbVie to further diversify our oncology pipeline across solid tumours and hematologic malignancies.

“Together, AbbVie and ImmunoGen have the potential to transform the standard of care for people living with cancer.”

ImmunoGen is engaged in developing next-generation ADCs to treat cancer patients, including targeted therapies with enhanced anti-tumour activity and favourable tolerability profiles.

Its lead candidate Elahere targets folate receptor alpha (FRα) with a maytansinoid payload DM4, a potent tubulin inhibitor designed to kill the targeted cancer cells.

Last year, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the drug to treat adults with FRα positive, platinum-resistant epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal cancer.

In addition to Elahere, ImmunoGen’s pipeline of promising next-generation ADCs will expand AbbVie’s growing pipeline of potential oncology programs across multiple cancer types.

The biotechnology company’s IMGN-151 is a next-generation anti-FRα ADC intended for ovarian cancer, which has the potential to be expanded into other solid tumour indications.

Its Pivekimab sunirine, which is currently in Phase 2 development, is an anti-CD123 ADC targeting blastic plasmacytoid dendritic cell neoplasm (BPDCN), a rare blood cancer.

JP Morgan Securities served as lead financial advisor, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz as legal advisor, and Morgan Stanley & Co. as a financial advisor to AbbVie, on this transaction.

Goldman Sachs & Co. and Lazard served as financial advisors and Ropes & Gray as legal advisor to ImmunoGen.