Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE: TEVA; TASE: TEVA) and Switzerland’s Lonza Group AG (SXW: LONN) announced today that, following a strategic review of the Teva-Lonza joint venture, they have decided to discontinue their collaboration for the development, manufacturing and marketing of biosimilars.
Biosimilars, or follow-on biologics, are terms used to describe officially approved subsequent versions of innovator biopharmaceutical products made by a different sponsor following patent and exclusivity expiry on the innovator product.
The companies said that discontinuation of their joint venture, which began in 2009, will enable both companies to better advance their own strategies and efforts in serving those healthcare communities, and that they will continue to explore opportunities to maximize the value of the investments and progress that the joint venture has made to this point, and remain in agreement that affordable, efficacious, and safe biosimilar treatments will bring benefits to patients and better serve these communities.
Teva president Global R&D and CSO Dr. Michael Hayden said, “Teva has a track record of success in the biologics arena and we plan to continue and build on that success. This decision supports our ability to maintain a highly selective approach in our efforts to create a balanced portfolio of biosimilars, biobetters and innovative biologics that align with our overall portfolio and areas of disease focus, and by doing so better support our patients in these areas.”
Lonza pharma & biotech market segment COO Dr. Stephan Kutzer said, “With the discontinuation of the joint venture we will cease investing in areas that are not strategic to Lonza such as clinical developments and end product commercialization. In our assessment those investments in biosimilar will require more capital than initially planned and will also take more time until they reach the market. This is why we intend in the future to limit our role by focusing on our core expertise in the areas of contract manufacturing and cell line development.”
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