Gilead buys CAR-T developer Kite Pharma for $12B

Gilead Sciences CEO John Milligan, under pressure from a flagging hep C franchise, has finally pulled the trigger on a deal aimed at growing sales in a new field. The company agreed to plunk down nearly $12 billion for Kite Pharma and its CAR-T candidate, winning Milligan the would-be cancer blockbuster he wanted.

The company will pay $180 cash per share, a 29% premium over Friday’s closing price, and a figure that it said values Kite at $11.9 billion. The deal should be a hit with antsy investors and will push Gilead to the front of the room in individualized cell-based cancer cures with Novartis, at a time when its own revenue is sliding. [Read more]