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In Vivo's Deals Of The Month, October 2017

Executive Summary

In Vivo's editors pick October's most significant deals, including bold moves from Vir Biotechnology and the birth of a major generics player. (Free article.)

Top Alliance: Vir Starts To Execute On Infectious Disease Strategy

Vir Biotechnology Inc. launched just 11 months ago, but has already amassed a $500 million war chest to battle infectious disease. It spent some of the money this month on potential billion-dollar strategic alliances with Visterra Inc. (development of up to six antibodies derived from Visterra's Hierotope platform) and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc.(evaluation of up to five RNAi therapeutics.) [See Deal][See Deal] Also in October, Vir forged research agreements with Harvard University, Oregon Health & Science University and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center,licensed technology from Stanford University, and acquired Swiss biotech Humabs BioMed SA for good measure.

Top Financing: Harmony Gets $270 Million (And A Phase III Drug)

CNS rare disease specialist Harmony Biosciences LLC raised $270 million in early-stage equity financing and will use part of the proceeds to fund its license of US rights to narcolepsy drug pitolisant from France's Bioproject. [See Deal][See Deal]. Harmony, formed earlier this year, expects to file an NDA for the Phase III selective histamine H3-receptor antagonist/inverse agonist in H1 2018. Pitolisant has orphan status in the US and is already sold in the EU as Wakix. Harmony and Bioproject will jointly pursue additional indications for pitolisant.

Top M&A: Amneal And Impax Join Forces In Generics

Amneal Pharmaceuticals LLC and Impax Laboratories Inc. will merge in an all-stock transaction to create the fifth-largest generics company in the US. The new company, which will bear Amneal's name, will have about 150 pending ANDAs and 165 projects in active stages of development. Amneal shareholders will own approximately 75% of the combined company, with Impax shareholders owning the remaining 25% post-close. The new Amneal will have 2017 pro forma revenue of between $1.75 billion and $1.85 billion. [See Deal]

Honorable mention: Smith & Nephew Buys Rotation Medical

Looking to build up its existing sports medicine portfolio, Smith & Nephew PLC is paying $125 million in cash for minimally invasive device maker Rotation Medical Inc., which has an FDA-cleared regeneration technology system to repair shoulder cuffs. S&N could also shell out up to $85 million in earn-outs based on financial performance over the next five years. [See Deal]

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