Savient to offload biologics business
manufacturing division to Swiss biotechnology firm Ferring for $80
million (€61 million) in cash payments spread over two years.
Savient said the sale, which has already approved by both boards and set to close by the end of the first half of this year, clears the way for the company to focus most of its efforts on the development of its pipeline products.
The acquisition will give Ferring a ready-made introduction into the emerging market for generic versions of biologic drugs.
The biologics manufacturing business includes a portfolio of seven products, headed by Bio-Tropin, a human growth hormone marketed as TevTropin in the US. The others are: Nuflexxa/Euflexxa (hyaluronic acid) for amelioration of knee pain due to osteoarthritis; BioLon (hyaluronic acid) for use in surgery; Bio-Hep-B, a recombinant hepatitis B vaccine; insulin; Fibrimage, a radiopharmaceutical product for diagnosis of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism; and a development stage generic biologic product.
"The transaction provides us with the capital to drive the advancement of Puricase into Phase III clinical trials and to pursue licensing or acquisition opportunities of novel compounds in clinical development as well as marketed products that satisfy the unmet medical needs of the rheumatology specialist, our therapeutic area of initial focus," said Savient CEO and president Christopher Clement.