Deal-Making

Later in-licensing deals impacting biopharma CDMOs, says expert

Biopharma firms are in-licensing candidates later according to an industry expert, who says the trend is impacting the CDMO sector. In-licensing – the practice of paying for rights to develop and commercialize a product discovered by another company – is a widely used strategy in the biopharmaceutical industry. According to a recent report in Nature the top 10 drug licensing deals in the first three quarters of 2019 were worth $34 billion (€31 billion), an increase of 10% from the…

Danaher closes in on $21bn GE takeover after FTC approval

Danaher says the GE Biopharma takeover will complete this month after US competition authorities grant conditional approval for the $21.4 billion deal. The condition imposed by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is that Danaher sells some bioprocessing technologies and products. The Commission announced its decision on March 20, explaining the original deal would have unfairly reduced competition. The divested techs will include microcarrier beads, various chromatography columns and skids, single use tangential flow filtration systems, label-fee molecular characterization instruments…

Juno hires Oxford Biomedica for vectors, platform and OxBox

Juno Therapeutics has licensed Oxford Biomedica’s gene delivery platform in a deal that will also see the latter make vectors for clinical trials. Juno will use the technology – known as the Lentivector platform – in both its CAR-T and TCR-T development programmes. The US biotech has agreed to pay $10 million upfront as well as $86 million based on the achievement of certain developmental and regulatory milestones. Oxford Biomedica will also receive sales royalties of up to $131 million…

One billion doses: CureVac gains $88m to support capacity for COVID-19 mRNA vaccine

CureVac – the German biotech at the center of a Donald Trump acquisition rumor – has received a grant from the European Commission to expedite construction of a plant set to make a potential mRNA vaccine against coronavirus. The European Commission (EC) offered up to €80 million ($88 million) of financial support to German firm CureVac this week in its efforts to support the development and manufacture of a potential vaccine to treat the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). At the time…

MilliporeSigma: Thermo Fisher’s Qiagen buy ‘no threat’ to bioprocess landscape

Merck KGaA says bioprocess M&A is significantly different than in the pharma world and sees no challenge to its MilliporeSigma division from Thermo Fisher’s recent acquisitions. Last week, bioprocess vendor Thermo Fisher agreed to buy Qiagen for $11.5 billion (€10.1 billion). The deal will bolster Thermo Fisher’s diagnostics business and add sample preparation, assay development and bioinformatics capabilities to its genetic analysis and biosciences capabilities. It is also the latest billion-dollar plus deal for Thermo Fisher, which has in recent…

Trouble choosing? BrevisRefero launches CDMO proposal platform

BrevisRefero has launched a Request For Proposal (RFP) platform aimed at helping biopharma better select its third-party manufacturing partners. The pharma world has for years relied on outsourcing partners. Contract research organizations (CROs) are used to carry out clinical trials, third parties manage transport and logistics, and of course contract development and manufacturing organizations (CDMOs) support production of nearly every component of the drug production process. Now the biopharma space can outsource the outsourcing process itself, through an online RFP…

Samsung Bio lands MAb development contract with STCube

Samsung Biologics has landed another development project when STCube asked it to help it with a cancer monoclonal antibody candidate. The South Korean contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) will provide cell line and process development services. It will also manufacture material for preclinical development and human trials. The monoclonal antibody in question targets an unspecified protein – called STT-003 by STCube – that is found on the surfaces of cancer cells. According to STCube, because cancer cells express high…

Thermo’s $11.5bn bid for Qiagen accepted

Thermo Fisher Scientific is poised to add coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 test kit to its diagnostics business after agreeing an $11.5bn takeover of Qiagen NV. The firms announced the agreement on Tuesday, valuing Qiagen at $11.5 billion, or €39 ($43.4) per share. Thermo CEO Marc N. Casper said, “This acquisition provides us with the opportunity to leverage our industry-leading capabilities and R&D expertise to accelerate innovation and address emerging healthcare needs. “For shareholders, we expect the transaction to be immediately accretive and…

Gilead: $4.9bn Forty Seven buy sits in the oncology ‘sweet spot’

The acquisition of monoclonal antibody developer Forty Seven complements Kite’s CAR-T therapy franchise in targeting cancers, says Gilead. Under deal terms announced Monday, Gilead will pay $95.50 (€85.50) for each share of Menlo Park, California-based Forty Seven, totaling $4.9 billion. Forty Seven’s lead CD47-blocking drug, an antibody called magrolimab, is being tested in combination with chemotherapy in separate studies evaluating it as a treatment for two types of blood cancer: a group of disorders called myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) and acute…

Fujifilm breaks ground at $54m NC biologics plant expansion

The expansion at a cell culture facility in Research Triangle Park will feed the demand for growing biologics pipelines, says CDMO Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies. Contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) Fujifilm broke ground on a 31,778 square-foot extension at its site in Research Triangle Park, Morrisville, North Carolina, which will add recovery and purification suites to support biomanufacturing. The firm says it will increase its cell culture manufacturing capacity by approximately 25% and microbial capacity by approximately 50% when the…