AstraZeneca: Everything must go!
- AstraZeneca is selling the rights to a Phase 1 oral dipeptidyl peptidase 1 (DPP-1) inhibitor to Bridgewater, NJ-based Insmed for $30 million upfront and $120 million in clinical, regulatory and commercial milestone payments.
- The British pharma will be eligible to receive tiered royalties on AZD7986 (INS1007) and has the option to negotiate a future commercialization agreement for the drug in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or asthma.
- Insmed is designing a Phase 2 trial for the drug in non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis that is expected to start in early 2017. The pulmonary disorder will be the initial indication Insmed pursues for the drug.
AstraZeneca has sold off its third drug in as many days. On Monday, the company announced it was selling its IL-23 monoclonal antibody to Allergan for $250 million upfront and $1.27 billion in potential milestones. That deal was followed the next day with the sale of U.S. rights to branded and authorized generic forms of the beta-blocker Toprol-XL (metoprolol succinate) to Aralez Pharmaceuticals for $175 million upfront and $48 million in milestones.
All told, AstraZeneca will pocket $455 million in upfront monies from this week's deal, with the potential for nearly $1.9 billion in contingent payments.
The company has been trying to re-focus the business over the last year, placing more emphasis on core therapeutic areas like oncology, respiratory, cardio-metabolic and autoimmune diseases.
In doing so, AstraZeneca has pursued an active externalization strategy, shedding numerous non-core assets to bridge the gap between declining revenue from older drugs and potential growth from new medicines.
While defending from a hostile takever bid by Pfizer two years ago, AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot set a lofty goal of hitting $45 billion in annual revenues by 2023. That goal always seemed a bit optimistic, but it has begun to look completely out of reach.
And AstraZeneca's ability to hit it took a major blow this week, when the drugmaker's blood thinner Brilinta failed a trial in peripheral artery disease. Coming six months after another trial setback in March, the British drugmaker conceded Brilinta likely won't hits its original annual revenue goal of $3.5 billion, according to Reuters.
- Insmed Statement
Follow Lisa LaMotta on Twitter