Questcor Pharmaceuticals to acquire BioVectra

Deal enables Questcor to secure further Acthar manufacturing process trade secrets

Questcor Pharmaceuticals has agreed to acquire all shares in BioVectra for C$50m.

BioVectra is a contract manufacturer of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), chemical intermediates, and bioprocessing reagents.

Located in Prince Edward Island, Canada, BioVectra has been Questcor's manufacturing partner for the API in Questcor's primary product, H.P. Acthar Gel (repository corticotropin injection), for almost a decade.

Questcor, a US biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Anaheim Hills, CA, is focused on the treatment of patients with difficult-to-treat autoimmune and inflammatory disorders and says the acquisition will enable it to secure the manufacturing process trade secrets surrounding Acthar.

BioVectra will continue to operate independently in Prince Edward Island, under its existing management team and Questcor intends to support the company’s continued growth.

This action puts us in a better position to meet the continuing growth in demand for Acthar

Don Bailey, president and CEO of Questcor, said: ‘This action puts us in a better position to meet the continuing growth in demand for Acthar, brings to our company a broader depth of technical and scientific expertise, and provides us with a platform for potential international expansion.’

Ron Keefe, CEO of BioVectra, added: ‘We pride ourselves on being a strategic partner, forging long-term relationships with our clients and utilising our proven technical skills to serve our clients' business needs.

‘Questcor has been an important long term partner and we look forward to building our relationship further.’

BioVectra’s capabilities include synthetic organic chemistry, natural extraction of bioactive compounds from plant and animal-based biomass sources, PEGylation and conjugation chemistry, and fermentation of a variety of molecule types. The US and Canadian regulatory authorities have approved BioVectra’s facilities to produce and supply intermediates, API's and drug substances.

The company employs around 180 people including chemists, engineers and technicians. Sales to 31 August 2012 were approximately $28m, a 15% increase over the previous fiscal year.

Subject to customary conditions, Questcor anticipates closing the transaction by the end of this month.

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