Cephalon Plays "Let's Make a Deal"

Never one to shy away from making a deal, Cephalon licensed a small drug-delivery platform on Monday from tiny Acusphere (Nasdaq: ACUS  ) for $10 million.

The platform helps turn drugs that don't dissolve well in water into more water-soluble compounds. In the deal, Cephalon also gets Acusphere's reformulation of the chemotherapy drug paclitaxel, AI-850, which Acusphere claims is bioequivalent to Abraxis BioScience's (Nasdaq: ABII  ) taxane Abraxane. The drug has completed phase 1 testing.

In the third quarter of last year, Abraxis' Abraxane brought in sales of $86 million, up 65% year over year. At this rate of sales growth, Abraxane will easily be a more than $400-million-a-year drug by the end of 2008. If Cephalon can use its much larger resources to bring Acusphere's paclitaxel to market, and if it can capture even a nominal chunk of the taxane market from Abraxane, then this $10 million deal with Acusphere is going to look like one of the steals of the decade for a drugmaker.

Cephalon has slowly been building up its anti-cancer pipeline and marketed products in the years since 2005, when it purchased Cell Therapeutics' (Nasdaq: CTIC  ) Trisenox for $70 million, Salmedix for $160 million, and Zeneus Pharma for $360 million.

Some of these 2005 acquisitions are already paying off for Cephalon, as we saw when Treanda received FDA marketing approval last month. With Cephalon proving its adeptness at purchasing new compounds and bringing them to market (could the company be the best in the industry?), I wouldn't be surprised to see this Acusphere deal pay off for Cephalon several years from now.

More Foolishness:


Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (6)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 611516, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/2/2014 2:40:02 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...


Advertisement