During his time with Pharmasset, Robert Hindes, MD, helped to develop the HCV drug Sovaldi and led the company’s clinical development program. When the company was purchased by Gilead Sciences, Robert Hindes, MD, temporarily joined the Gilead team in a transitional capacity before leaving to cofound his own company.
In late 2011, pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences announced an agreement to purchase the smaller company Pharmasset for $137 per share, or roughly $11 billion in total. This represented nearly a third of Gilead’s total value at the time, making the purchase both risky and rather remarkable. Pharmasset, which had less than 100 employees at the time of purchase, was a small research-based company that was making significant progress with two different drugs meant to treat chronic hepatitis C (HCV).
Gilead Sciences and Pharmasset representatives agreed that the companies shared a common vision for the development of HCV treatments. At the time, Gilead was making progress with its own HCV treatments, but determined that acquiring the Pharmasset nucleoside polymerase inhibitors would help it compete on a higher level and bring effective therapies to the public even faster.