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Jazz Pharmaceuticals to Acquire GW Pharma

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Last week, GW Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: GWPH) announced that it had entered into an agreement with Jazz Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: JAZZ) to acquire GW Pharma by Jazz. Both boards of directors of the two companies have approved the deal and expect the acquisition to be completed in the second quarter of 2021.

GW Pharma is known in the cannabis industry as the manufacturer of the first and only FDA-approved CBD-containing drug, Epidiolex. Epidiolex is approved for the treatment of seizures in rare diseases such as severe forms of epilepsy. GW is also currently in Phase 3 trials filing for FDA approval for a similar drug, nabiximols, that treats convulsions in conditions like multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury.

Jazz Pharmaceuticals is an Ireland-based biopharmaceutical company best known for its drug Xyrem, which is FDA approved for the treatment of narcolepsy.

Bruce Cozadd, Chairman and CEO of Jazz, says the acquisition will bring together two companies that have a proven track record of developing “differentiated therapies” to expand their sleep medicine portfolio and growing oncology business. “We are excited to add GW’s industry-leading cannabinoid platform, innovative pipeline and products that will strengthen and expand our neuroscience portfolio, further diversify our sales and create sustainable, long-term value opportunities,” said Cozadd.

Justin Gover, CEO of GW Pharma, says the two companies share a vision for developing and commercializing innovative drugs with an emphasis on neuroscience. “Over the past two decades, GW has built unprecedented global leadership in cannabinoid science, including the successful launch of Epidiolex, a groundbreaking product in the field of epilepsy, and a diverse and robust neuroscientific pipeline,” said Gover. “We believe Jazz is an ideal growth partner who is committed to supporting our commercial endeavors as well as ongoing clinical and research programs.”

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Robert Dunfee