The global pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca plc (NYSE: AZN) is back with its fifth deal of the year, and its biggest one at that. AstraZeneca is buying Boston, Massachusetts-based Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALXN) for $39 billion. Alexion is a global biopharmaceutical company that has pioneered complement inhibition for a broad spectrum of immune-mediated rare diseases caused by uncontrolled activation of the complement system, a vital part of the immune system.

According to the terms of the agreement, Alexion shareholders will receive $60 cash and 2.1243 AstraZeneca American Depositary Shares (ADS) per share (each ADS equals 1/2 AZN share). Based on AstraZeneca’s reference average ADR price of $54.14, Alexion shareholders will be getting $175 per share in total. Alexion has generated an annualized revenue of $6.35 billion and an annualized EBITDA of $3.079 billion.

Alexion’s expertise in complement biology will accelerate AstraZeneca’s presence in immunology. AstraZeneca will build on Alexion’s pipeline of 11 molecules across more than 20 clinical-development programs across the spectrum of indications, in rare diseases and beyond.

The combined company will have recurring run-rate pre-tax synergies of roughly $500 million. AstraZeneca has entered into a new committed $17.5 billion bridge-financing facility, provided by Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan Securities plc and Goldman Sachs.

Based on past M&A activity over the past year, this new acquisition from AstraZeneca seems to be a pivot. According to search results in our Healthcare Deal Database, AstraZeneca’s deals throughout the year seem to be focused on oncology research. In mid-July, the company struck a deal with Daiichi Sankyo Company (OTCMKTS: SKYF) focused on DS-1062, Daiichi Sankyo’s proprietary trophoblast cell-surface antigen 2 (TROP2)-directed antibody-drug conjugate (ADC), and potential new medicine for the treatment of multiple tumor types. 

In that deal, AstraZeneca agreed to pay $1 billion in staged payments over 24 months, and up to $5 billion for the successful achievement of regulatory approvals and sales-related milestones. 

In June, the company entered into a collaboration agreement with Accent Therapeutics to discover, develop, and commercialize therapeutics targeting RNA-modifying proteins (RMPs) for the treatment of cancer. AstraZeneca paid $55 million upfront in that deal.