Roche-Genentech: $16 Billion Raised, Raptiva Off the Market, Stock Market Doesn't Care

Last Updated Feb 19, 2009 3:08 PM EST

Roche has raised $16 billion from the bond market to fund its takeover of Genentech. It will probably need to pay $40-45 billion to get the company. Roche has about $4.9 billion in cash on its balance sheet, so ... still about $20 billion to go, guys!

Roche may have been smirking slightly at the news that the FDA put out a public health advisory for Genentech's plaque psoriasis drug Raptiva, after two more people died of the PML brain infection associated with the drug.

In addition, the EU suspended sales of the drug. Here's what they said:

"The benefits of Raptiva no longer outweigh its risks, because of safety concerns," European regulators said today in an e-mailed statement. "Prescribers should not issue any new prescriptions for Raptiva and should review the treatment of patients currently receiving the medicine to assess the most appropriate alternatives."
Normally you'd think that would make Genentech cheaper for Roche to buy, but not in this case. Raptiva only makes about $100 million in revenues per year, and in Q4 was already in decline. The loss of Raptiva just isn't significant.

Lastly: Note that Genentech's stock is still trading below Roche's lowball $86.50 offer price. The folks on Genentech's board of directors think the company is worth $115 a share. The market currently regards that as delusional thinking, apparently.