According to people familiar with the matter, Iovance Biotherapeutics is exploring a sale and has held early discussions with potential buyers, Bloomberg reported Tuesday. Company shares gained as much as nearly 30% on the news.
One of the sources indicated that Iovance, which specialises in cell therapy focused on treating solid tumours, is working with a financial adviser after receiving takeover interest. However, the people noted that no final decision has been made and Iovance could still decide to remain an independent company.
A representative for the company declined to comment on the speculation. Iovance, formerly known as Lion Biotechnologies, has a market value of $3.1 billion as of the close of trading on February 24.
Recent takeovers in the biotechnology space include Merck & Co. completing its acquisition of ArQule for about $2.7 billion last month, while Sanofi also finalised a roughly $2.5-billion deal for Synthorx.
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