Drug Sponsors

Catalent to acquire Cook Pharmica for $950M

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Catalent, a global provider of advanced delivery technologies and development solutions for drugs, biologics and consumer health products, has reached an agreement to acquire Bloomington, Indiana-based Cook Pharmica, an integrated provider of drug substance and drug product manufacturing and related services. The purchase price is $950 million, with $750 million to be paid at closing and the balance to be paid in equal installments, without interest, on each of the next four anniversaries of the closing. The acquisition will strengthen Catalent’s position as a leader in the rapidly growing area of biologics development and analytical services, manufacturing, and finished product supply.

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TransCelerate BioPharma adds Novartis

Monday, September 18, 2017

TransCelerate BioPharma announces the addition of Novartis to the biopharmaceutical nonprofit organization, growing the consortium to 19 biopharmaceutical companies. In addition, TransCelerate membership have elected Elliott Levy, M.D., Senior Vice President, Global Development at Amgen as the new Chair of the Board of the Directors and David Nicholson, Ph.D., Executive Vice President, and Chief R&D Officer at Allergan, will assume the Vice Chair role.

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ProQR spins out Amylon Therapeutics for CNS therapeutics

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

ProQR Therapeutics has spun out Amylon Therapeutics, a privately-held company focused on the development of therapies for central nervous system (CNS) disorders, with seed funding from a group of institutional and private investors. As part of the transaction, ProQR has granted an exclusive license to Amylon to develop therapeutics for beta amyloid related disorders.

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Alexion restructures, cuts workforce 20%

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Alexion Pharmaceuticals announced an operational plan to re-align the global organization with its refocused corporate strategy. The plan is expected to deliver approximately $270 million in GAAP and approximately $250 million in non-GAAP pre-tax savings annually by 2019. The restructuring will reduce the company’s global workforce by approximately 20%. The resulting savings will allow Alexion to prioritize investments to advance growth opportunities, optimize capabilities across the organization, and position Alexion to deliver on its financial ambitions, including growing GAAP operating margin to 37% and non-GAAP operating margin to 50% in 2019.

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Inotek, Rocket announce merger agreement

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Inotek Pharmaceuticals has entered into a definitive merger agreement with Rocket Pharmaceuticals, a U.S.-based gene therapy company. Subject to shareholder approval, the combined company will retain the name Rocket Pharmaceuticals and will be headquartered in New York City. The combined company will focus on developing and advancing its pipeline of gene therapies based on lentiviral virus (LVV) and adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy platforms, with a focus on treating devastating rare diseases.

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Lilly closes two R&D centers, cuts 3,500 jobs

Friday, September 8, 2017

Eli Lilly announced actions to streamline operations to more efficiently focus resources on developing new medicines and to improve its cost structure. Global workforce reductions, including those from a U.S. voluntary early retirement program, are expected to impact approximately 3,500 positions.

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Merck to acquire Rigontec

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Merck, known as MSD outside the U.S. and Canada, will acquire Rigontec. Rigontec is a pioneer in accessing the retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I) pathway, part of the innate immune system, as a novel and distinct approach in cancer immunotherapy to induce both immediate and long-term anti-tumor immunity. Rigontec’s lead candidate, RGT100, is currently in phase I development evaluating treatment in patients with various tumors. Under the terms of the agreement, Merck, through a subsidiary, will make an upfront cash payment of €115 million to Rigontec’s shareholders; based on the attainment of certain clinical, development, regulatory and commercial milestones, Merck may make additional contingent payments of up to €349 million. The transaction is subject to certain closing conditions.

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