Takeda gets Ambys-tious

Takeda finally gets the ball rolling in liver diseases with $140M Ambys deal

After a two-year search, Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd.’s equity investment and option deal with newco Ambys Medicines finally gets the ball rolling on the pharma’s goal of building a liver franchise within its core area of gastroenterology.

The way it solved the problem was by taking its trend of doing earlier and earlier deals to its logical conclusion -- company formation.

Takeda President and CEO Christophe Weber kicked off 2016 with a strategy to globalize the Japanese pharma that involved narrowing its therapeutic focus to three areas -- cancer, CNS and gastrointestinal disorders -- and becoming a go-to partner across the globe in each (see “Taking Takeda Global”).

Despite progress expanding its GI pipeline through partnerships in Crohn's disease, celiac disease and GI motility, Asit Parikh, head of Takeda’s gastroenterology unit, told BioCentury the pharma had failed to do any deals in liver disease, an area it had hoped would be a key growth driver for

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