Viropro, Inc. and Oncobiologics, Inc. announced today the signing of a biosimilar collaboration agreement. Under the agreement, Viropro will have the rights to manufacture six monoclonal antibody products being developed by Oncobiologics for commercialization in more than 70 emerging market countries (excluding China). Viropro will have exclusive commercialization rights to the six biosimilars for Malaysia. In addition, the companies will co-manage Viropro’s Penang, Malaysia Alpha Biologics biomanufacturing subsidiary. The alliance will seek regional partners to drive commercialization.
The six biosimilars are generic versions of Humira, Rituxan, Avastin, Herceptin, Erbitux and one other non-disclosed biotherapeutic. These biologics are the most popular therapies in the world for their respective cancer and immune-disease indications, representing annual global revenue of more than $40 billion with more than $6 billion in the emerging countries covered by the agreement. The companies project that Viropro commercial and manufacturing royalties have the potential to grow to an annual revenue run rate of $60–$150 million for Viropro within 10 years. The partnership is planning to launch its first product by late 2014.
“The Oncobiologics biosimilars program is a perfect complement to Viropro’s biomanufacturing expertise. Their scientific team is comprised of recognized industry veterans and we are impressed by the high quality of the science they are achieving,” said Viropro President & CEO Cynthia Ekberg Tsai. “This partnership brings together high-quality molecules developed to FDA and EU regulatory standards integrated with world class biomanufacturing, the net result being high quality products with low cost of goods. Together we are well positioned to provide emerging countries access to affordable, high-quality biopharmaceutical products for critical indications.”
Oncobiologics Founder and CEO, Pankaj Mohan, Ph.D., added, “We are thrilled to have Viropro as an anchor partner. Together we form a fully integrated biopharmaceutical alliance to serve the emerging markets. The combination of a state-of-the-art biologics manufacturing facility and support from the Malaysian Government makes Viropro an ideal partner. This unique partnership allows us to bring together technical expertise and quality oversight from the U.S. with a high capability, low cost biologics operation in Malaysia.“
Dato’ Dr. Mohd Nazlee Kamal, CEO of Malaysian BiotechCorp, commented, “Malaysia’s strategy to become a biotech hub for Asia is rapidly gaining traction, and this Viropro/ Oncobiologics partnership is a significant step in moving this effort forward. BiotechCorp is proud to be part of this collaboration and we look forward to many great developments. This project will attract interest in the biosimilars manufacturing field and will certainly build the confidence of global biotech companies in Malaysian companies as we strive to develop the biomedical sector in the country.” Malaysian BiotechCorp is an agency under the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) responsible for executing the objectives of the National Biotechnology Policy (NBP).
Proximare, a strategic advisory firm focused on the life sciences and healthcare industries, acted as advisor for the deal. Financial terms were not disclosed.