Fierce Pharma Asia—Samsung's deal with Pfizer; Olympus' and Dr. Reddy's M&A moves; BeiGene's growth

Pfizer tapped Samsung Biologics' manufacturing capabilities in a $183 million deal. Olympus is buying a Korean endoscopic device maker for up to $370 million. Dr. Reddy's is boosting its U.S. generics portfolio with a $105 million acquisition. BeiGene's revenue climbed nearly 100% in 2022 thanks to two cancer drugs. And more.

1. Pfizer inks $183M contract manufacturing deal with Samsung Biologics

Samsung Biologics has signed a deal with Pfizer. The deal is worth $183 million and runs through 2029, although the exact products to be covered remain unclear. Samsung has previously partnered with Moderna to make the latter’s COVID vaccine and recently struck a $296 million pact with GSK.

2. Olympus mounts $370M bid to acquire GI stent maker Taewoong Medical

Olympus has offered up to $370 million to purchase Taewoong Medical, a South Korean maker of endoscopic devices for gastrointestinal procedures. Olympus appeared to specifically appreciate Taewoong’s broad slate of metallic GI stents, which are used in minimally invasive procedures to open up the GI tract. The acquisition comes as part of a bigger plan at Olympus to focus on GI, urological and respiratory care.

3. Dr. Reddy's bolsters US generics business with $105M deal to buy Mayne Pharma assets

In another M&A deal, Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories plans to spend up to $105 million to purchase Mayne Pharma’s U.S. generics portfolio, including 45 in-market products and many approved but unmarketed drugs. Mayne Pharma just recently expanded its offerings by snatching up TherapeuticsMD’s products, which will remain with the company.

4. BeiGene doubles sales as Brukinsa, tislelizumab gear up for key launches

BeiGene’s 2022 product revenues reached $1.25 billion, up nearly 100% from $634 million in 2021. Blood cancer drug Brukinsa and PD-1 inhibitor tislelizumab were the main drivers of the growth. Both drugs face critical commercial tests this year.

5. ICER dials up recommended price range for Eisai's Leqembi—but still calls for sizable discount

After FDA’s surprise rejection of Eli Lilly’s donanemab, the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review has updated its cost-effectiveness analysis of Eisai’s Leqembi. The new recommended price range came above ICER’s previous estimates, including a $900 increase in annual costs on the upper end.

6. Junshi's lipid lowering drug hits phase 3 goals, teeing up challenge to Amgen, Sanofi in growth market

Junshi Biosciences said two pivotal trials of its PCSK9 drug ongericimab have hit their goals in patients with high cholesterol. The positive readouts set Junshi up to challenge Amgen’s Repatha and Sanofi’s Praluent in China. The two Western pharmas both cited China’s reimbursement coverage as a driver of their PCSK9 drugs’ growth last year.

7. Chinese biotechs Eluminex, Oricell, Immorna raise fresh money

Three Chinese biotechs raised additional cash. Ophthalmology-focused Eluminex Biosciences raised $40 million in a series B. Cell therapy specialist Oricell Therapeutics added $45 million to a $125 million series B round from last July. And mRNA therapeutics developer Immorna secured about $100 million in extended series A rounds.

Other News of Note

8. GE HealthCare, Sinopharm plan joint venture to expand access to CT, ultrasound imaging

9. Everest debuts $130M mRNA vaccine plant with aim at Chinese market dominance

10. Amneal injectables plant slapped by FDA for sanitary issues, improper working conditions

11. Keytruda killer: Chipscreen bags Chinese rights to Biocytogen's bispecific antibody