Hedge Fund Adage Reaps Big Initial Gain on Health-Care Takeover

(Bloomberg) -- Adage Capital Management, a $30 billion hedge fund founded by two former money mangers from Harvard University’s endowment, reaped an initial gain of more than $100 million Monday after Swiss drugmaker Novartis AG agreed to acquire AveXis Inc.

AveXis, which has a promising drug to treat a rare disease that afflicts infants, rose 80 percent to $208.05 a share at 9:32 am in New York trading. Novartis’ $8.7 billion offer represented an 88 percent premium to AveXis’ Friday closing price.

Adage, which is based in Boston, owned about 1.4 million AveXis shares as of Dec. 31, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Assuming the hedge fund has hung on to its shares, that stake rose in value by about $130 million. Adage has owned AveXis since the first quarter of 2016 when the Bannockburn, Illlinois company first went public at $20 a share.

Adage, which takes long and short bets on equities, was started by Phillip Gross and Robert Atchinson in 2001. Adage declined to comment on the news.

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