FRANKFURT, Germany--Hoechst Marion Roussel and Ariad Pharmaceuticals announced that Hoechst intends to purchase Ariad's 50 percent ownership stake in the Hoechst-Ariad Genomics Center, a joint venture created in 1997. The two companies formed the center to pursue functional genomics based upon the latest technologies in molecular and cellular genetics and bioinformatics. The center's goal is to analyze human genes and identify those genes that encode novel therapeutic proteins or targets for small-molecule drug discovery.
Upon closing of the sale, Ariad will receive $40 million in cash; return of approximately three million shares of Ariad series B convertible preferred stock; forgiveness of approximately $2 million in long-term debt held by Hoechst Marion Roussel; and rights to compounds and related technologies resulting from a collaboration on the development of SRC tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Ariad will be given $5 million of the purchase price immediately. The sale is expected to close before year's end.