The San Diego-based company has said that it is committed to resolving all issues revolving around its acquisition of GRAIL for $8 billion in 2020 but insists that the EC holds no jurisdiction over the deal and intends to challenge the decision.
Previously, on 6 September, the European Commission had ordered Illumina to undo its acquisition of GRAIL, citing that the deal would likely impact consumer choice in the emerging market for blood-based early cancer detection tests.
A spokesperson for the European Commission said: “The Commission has adopted restorative measures requiring Illumina to divest GRAIL and restore the situation prevailing before the completion of the acquisition.”
Now, Illumina has made a jurisdictional challenge, which remains pending at the European Court of Justice (ECJ), as well as an additional challenge to the ruling at the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The company has said that should either appeal fail it will divest itself of GRAIL.
The decision comes after Illumina had previously been fined €432 million by the EC for completing its merger with GRAIL prior to having received approval from the European body.
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A spokesperson for Illumina said: “Receipt of the order is an important next step in evaluating divestiture options for GRAIL.
“Illumina is committed to resolving all issues regarding GRAIL in a timely manner, with the objective of achieving the maximum value for shareholders and the best outcome for GRAIL. Notably, the terms of the order provide for flexibility in transaction structure, an encouraging outcome from Illumina’s ongoing dialogue with the EC.”
Under the terms of the EC’s divestment order, Illumina will have 12 months to fully disentangle itself from GRAIL, with the potential for a three-month extension. Additionally, Illumina is required to continue funding GRAIL until the divestment fully takes place.