12:00 AM
Oct 03, 2016
 |  BioCentury  |  Strategy

Combo deals

How Allergan quickly assembled a NASH tool kit with Tobira, Akarna deals

Allergan plc's two NASH acquisitions give it the second biggest pipeline for the indication and enough mechanisms to develop in-house combinations that could target multiple drivers of the disease pathophysiology.

Together, Allergan's Sept. 20 deals to acquire Tobira Therapeutics Inc. and Akarna Therapeutics Ltd. give the pharma three mechanisms in non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. Gilead Sciences Inc. has four, with the only overlap across the two companies being a farnesoid X receptor (FXR; NR1H4) agonist.

Allergan's FXR agonist comes from Akarna, which Allergan acquired for $50 million up front plus undisclosed milestones. The biotech's AKN-083 is in preclinical testing for NASH.

Tobira brings cenicriviroc, a dual CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5; CD195) and CCR2 (CD192) antagonist that is in Phase IIb testing, and evogliptin, a dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4; CD26) inhibitor that is in Phase I testing as a monotherapy and in combination with cenicriviroc.

For Tobira, Allergan will pay $28.35 per share in cash up front, or $595 million, plus a contingent value right (CVR) worth up to $49.84 per share tied to four cenicriviroc milestones.

The first potential payout would be $13.68 for the start of enrollment in a Phase III trial for NASH. Allergan expects to start the Phase III testing in mid-2017, pending feedback from an end-of-Phase II meeting with FDA.

Next up is $4.53 for an NDA submission before 2028. The final two payments would be $13.56 for the first sale in the U.S., and $18.07 if cenicriviroc posts more than $1 billion in worldwide sales in any four consecutive quarters within its first three years on the market.

If all the milestones are met, Tobira shareholders would make out with $1.7 billion.

The upfront price is a 498% premium to Tobira's close...

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