Rare Daily Staff 

The Japanese-based drug giant Takeda Pharmaceutical issued a statement confirming that it is considering a bid to acquire rare disease drugmaker Shire.

Takeda said that it is at a “preliminary and exploratory stage” in its consideration and that it has not yet approached the board of Shire.

“Takeda believes that a potential transaction with Shire presents an opportunity to advance Takeda’s stated Vision 2025, build on its current strong momentum, and create a truly global, value-based Japanese biopharmaceutical leader,” the company said.

An acquisition of Shire would propel Takeda into a leading rare disease company and strengthen its position in specialty pharmaceuticals. It would also expand on Takeda’s core strength in neuroscience and enhance the company’s geographic reach by strengthening its presence in the United States.

Shire confirmed that Takeda has not contacted it with an offer.

Under United Kingdom regulations, Takeda has until 5 p.m. London Time April 25 to either announce its plans to make an offer or state that it does not intend to make one.

Shire’s stock popped more than 20 percent on Wednesday on speculation of a possible deal. It traded as high as $50 today on above average volume. The company’s market cap is currently around $44 billion.

March 28, 2018