The struggling Durham, NC-based Trimeris is being snapped up by South Korea's Arigene for $81 million in cash. Both boards have approved the deal.
Trimeris' shares (TRMS) had traded at about $30 back in 2000, when expectations for the company's AIDS drug Fuzeon were running high. But sales never lived up to market expectations, with a $20,000 annual cost and side effects limiting the company's royalties. Employment dwindled to a handful of workers as the biotech slashed costs, and the News & Observer notes that second quarter revenue dropping to $3.6 million in the second quarter from the $4.5 million it earned in the same period last year. The company's web site lists a next generation fusion inhibitor program in the pipeline.
Trimeris' share price has dropped 32 percent this year and Arigene agreed to pay a 40 percent premium on its October 1 close.