Versicor: Keeping control

Back-to-School Issue

Lesson: In a highly partnered industry, there comes a time when M&A is essential to maintaining control over assets. It doesn’t hurt when the newco can reinforce its balance sheet and expand its market reach at the same time.

Versicor’s purchase of Biosearch bears some resemblance to GENZ’s acquisition of GelTex, as both involved companies that already had a significant collaboration, which would allow the purchaser to easily drop significant additional revenues to the bottom line. However, the benefit is still theoretical in the case of this newco, renamed Vicuron Pharmaceuticals Inc. (MICU; NMerc:MICU, King of Prussia, Penn.).

Versicor and Biosearch had been collaborating since 1998, when Versicor licensed North American rights to dalbavancin from Biosearch. And under a second collaboration, the companies had been identifying natural products with antibacterial properties from Biosearch’s

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