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NewLink Genetics rejects takeover bid from Evercel

Evercel Inc. said NewLink Genetics Corp. rejected its two offers to acquire the Ames, Iowa-based biopharmaceutical company.

On Nov. 25, Evercel disclosed it made alternative offers to buy Newlink, one of which entailed acquiring the latter for $1.75 in cash per share. The New York-based holding company said NewLink's board rejected their offers without conducting discussions.

In September, NewLink Genetics agreed to merge with Austin, Texas-based private biotech company Lumos Pharma Inc. Under the all-stock deal, NewLink will issue common shares to Lumos shareholders in exchange for their shares. Following the merger, Lumos will own 50% of NewLink.

NewLink Chief Medical Officer Eugene Kennedy previously said Lumos team's experience in rare disease drug development and corporate management align with NewLink's strategic focus.

Meanwhile, Evercel said it believes its cash offer is superior to the Lumos Pharma offer.