Week In Review: Hua Medicine To Raise $200 Million Through Fundings And IPO For Oral Diabetes Drug

Hua Medicine of Shanghai expects to spend $200 million over the next three years on its novel oral diabetes 2 treatment, dorzagliatin (see story). The company will raise additional capital for the effort and then IPO, possibly in Hong Kong or the US. The funds will underwrite Phase III development of its GKA product and commercialization. Ultimately, Hua hopes dorzagliatin will generate annual revenues of $3 billion, a 15% slice of the China type 2 diabetes market, once the drug is approved. Hua expects China approval in 2020.

Shanghai Fosun Pharma (SHA: 600196; HK: 2196) announced a $50 million US joint venture, a JV that includes two Fosun entities (see story). Fosun Pharma USA will pay $25.5 million to own a 51% interest in the new JV, which was not named, and Fosun International (HK: 656), the conglomerate that is the parent of Fosun Pharma and its largest shareholder, will contribute the remainder, $24.5 million. Not much is known about the rationale behind the JV, except that it will be located in the US and focused on innovation in R&D, manufacturing, medical devices and medical diagnosis, which is not a very specific explanation. 

Suzhou Kintor Pharma raised $44 million in a funding led by Shenzhen Green Pine Capital Partners (see story). Established in 2009, Kintor is an innovative high-tech pharma developing novel products. Since its founding, the company has received over 25 Significant New Drug Creation awards, plus the China Science and Technology Ministry's small and mid-size enterprise innovation funding support along with other awards.  

Lepu Medical Technology (Beijing) (SHZ: 300003) acquired a 13% stake in Australia's Viralytics (ASX: VLA, OTC: VRACY) via a $23.3 million private placement of Viralytics' shares (see story). Viralytics will use the funds for an Australian Phase III trial of CAVATAK, its oncolytic immunotherapy based on a common cold virus. Lepu has started Chinaclinical trials of its own PD-1 and PD-L1 checkpoint inhibitors, a class of drugs that are expected to be effective adjuncts to CAVATAK. Besides pharmaceutical drugs, Lepu is involved in medical devices, healthcare services, and private hospitals.  

Fosun Pharma (SHA: 600196; HK: 2196) acquired China rights to market a novel treatment for Parkinson's disease from Portugal's BIAL in an $18 million agreement (see story). BIAL developed Ongentys® (opicapone) as a once-daily adjunctive therapy to levodopa/DOPA decarboxylase inhibitors. It was approved in the EU in 2016. Wanbang Biopharma, a Fosun Pharma subsidiary, will commercialize the drug in China, paying $3 million upfront and up to $15 million in milestones.  

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