Pfizer adds AZ antibiotics to portfolio

Article by Staff Writer

PFIZER will pay up to US$1.575bn to AstraZeneca for the commercialisation and development rights to its small molecule antibiotics business outside of the US.

The business includes Zavicefta, a combination of ceftazidime and avibactam which was approved for use in the EU in late June for serious resistant infections requiring hospitalisation, such as complicated urinary tract infections and hospital-acquired pneumonia. It also includes Merrem/Meronem (meropenem) and Zinforo (ceftaroline fosamil), which have established markets, and aztreonam-avibactam (ATM-AVI) and CXL, which are under clinical development for multidrug-resistant bacteria.

Pfizer will pay US$550m to AstraZeneca up front, and a further payment in January 2019 for US$175m. Pfizer will also give AstraZeneca up to US$250m in milestone payments and up to US$600m in sales-related payments. In certain markets, Pfizer will pay tiered royalties on sales of Zaficefta and ATM-ATI.

News of the transaction comes just a day after Pfizer bought US biopharmaceutical company Medivation, which specialises in oncology, for US$14bn.

Luke Miels, executive vice president for Europe and head of AstraZeneca’s Antibiotics Business Unit, said that the sale was part of the company’s strategy to focus on its three main business areas of respiratory and autoimmunity, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, and oncology.

“We are committed to looking for ways to enhance our portfolio around the world where we offer patients and healthcare professionals access to more than 60 anti-infective and anti-fungal medicines. The addition of AstraZeneca’s complementary small molecule anti-infectives portfolio will help expand patient access to these important medicines and enhance our global expertise and offerings in this increasingly important area of therapeutics, in addition to providing the opportunity for near-term revenue growth,” said John Young, group president, Pfizer Essential Health.

The transaction is expected to be completed in Q4 2016, subject to regulatory approval.

In 2014, Pfizer failed in its attempt to buy AstraZeneca for £55/share (US$92/share), £69bn in total. Analysts have told media outlets that the latest deal seems to confirm that Pfizer will not attempt another takeover.

Article by Staff Writer

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