- Teva continued its foray into the biosimilar space on Thursday, announcing an exclusive partnership with Celltrion to commercialize two of the South Korean company’s biosimilar candidates that mimic Roche cancer drugs.
- The deal, which is worth up to $160 million, allows Teva to market Celltrion’s CT-P6 and CT-P10 —biosimilars of Roche’s breast cancer drug Herceptin (trastuzumab) and cancer med drug Rituxan (rituximab), respectively. Sales for Herceptin and Rituxan totaled nearly $6.3 billion in the U.S. alone in 2015, according to Roche.
- Generics giant Teva has struggled in recent years to reorganize and bring new drugs to market, but the company said in an Oct. 6 statement that its collaboration with Celltrion will help it gain a stronger foothold in the growing biosimilar industry.
Per deal terms, Israel-based Teva will be responsible for selling the two biosimilars in Canada and the U.S. Of the $160 million Teva is forking over, up to $60 million can be refunded or credited, though the company did not provide further details about what circumstances would trigger the refund.
The deal is not the first of its type for Celltrion. The biosimilar manufacturer is working with Pfizer to market Inflectra in the U.S. Pfizer previously held the rights to CT-P6 and CT-P10 as well, but handed them back to Celltrion after acquiring Hospira for $17 billion in 2015, since Hospira already had biosimilars for those products in its pipeline.
Korean biopharma peer Samsung Bioepis has inked similar deals in recent years, partnering with Biogen and Merck to commercialize its biosimilar candidates in certain geographies. As it stands, Biogen is responsible for marketing Bioepis' anti-TNF biosimilars in Europe, while Merck will handle oncology biosimilars worldwide and all candidates in the U.S.
Teva has also been active in M&A, in part to bolster its base generics business. It acquired Allergan’s generics business, for example, in July of last year for $40.5 billion. The transaction bolstered Teva’s generic R&D and technology businesses, which helped the company to "focus resources and efforts in complex generics, biosimilars and specialty products in key therapeutic areas," according to a release.
Teva shares were up about 0.4% to $45.39 in Thursday morning trading. Still, the company’s stock has fallen more than 30% year-to-date. It currently has a market cap of $41.2 billion.