Siga ordered to pay $113M to PharmaAthene in smallpox case
- Siga Technologies has been ordered to pay PharmAthene $113 million—significantly less than the $139.8 million requested—in a lawsuit filed for violation of a licensing agreement regarding the smallpox medicine Arestvyr.
- Siga is now moving forward with its bankruptcy case.
- "This decision is definitely good news for Siga," said former Gardner Lewis Asset Managementpresident and Siga shareholder John L. Lewis. "They’ve already collected millions from government contracts, so they have the wherewithal to pay this damage award and finally move forward."
Although Siga faces a fine and bankruptcy due to the dispute with PharmAthene, the fact that the award is less than anticipated was viewed positively in the market, sending Siga's stock up 18%.
However, the $113 million does not include damages, and Siga plans to ask the Delaware Supreme Court to overturn the damages ruling.
PharmAthene alleges that it loaned Siga $3 million to keep development of Aventyr going, and Siga eventually won a US contract for 2 million doses (though last case of smallpox in the US was in 1949). PharmAthene did not benefit from that contract, and intends to collect on its damages:
"The total award, when finalized, including interest and reimbursement of a portion of PharmAthene's attorneys' and expert witness fees, is estimated to be in excess of $190 million," said a PharmAthene spokesperson in a release.