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By Marie Daghlian

Sanofi-Aventis (NYSE:SNY) reinforced its presence in China with the acquisition of BMP Sunstone for $521 million in cash, representing a 30 percent premium above the closing price of Sunstone’s shares before its board of directors unanimously approved the transaction.

The merger follows the recent formation of Hangzhou Sanofi Minsheng Consumer Healthcare joint venture and will make the pharmaceutical powerhouse a leading consumer healthcare company in China.

“The acquisition of BMP Sunstone will not only leverage our consumer healthcare business in China, but will also bring us unique access to new expanding distribution channels which are expected to account for a third of the pharmaceutical market in China in the coming years,” says Sanofi CEO Chris Viehbacher.

BMP Sunstone is a specialty pharmaceutical that manufactures pediatric and women’s health products sold in pharmacies throughout China and had sales of approximately $147 million in 2009, 60 percent of which were in the consumer health segment. The company also markets a portfolio of products under exclusive multi-year licenses in China, primarily focused on women's health and pediatrics, and provides pharmaceutical distribution services through subsidiaries in Beijing and Shanghai.

Sanofi has been moving aggressively into the consumer healthcare market as a way to diversify and grow the company as several of its biggest drugs go off patent. The company claims to be the fifth largest consumer healthcare company in the world, since its acquisition of U.S. consumer products company Chattem in 2009. China’s market for these products is second only to the United States and has grown at 11 percent per year since 2005, a trend that is expected to continue as its middle class grows and becomes more urban.

Sanofi already has a major presence in China with 5,000 people in more than 200 cities and three manufacturing facilities, and a large research and development center in Shanghai. Completion of the transaction is subject to Chinese regulatory approval and to the approval of BMP Sunstone stockholders, 23 percent of which have committed to vote in favor of the merger.

Sanofi was not the only pharmaceutical company crossing borders to do a deal. Israeli generic powerhouse Teva Pharmaceuticals (NYSE:TEVA) went to Germany to acquire Théramex, Merck KGaA’s (OTCPK:MKGAY) women’s health business, for $367 million. Théramex’s products are sold in 50 countries worldwide, including countries in which Teva will acquire distribution rights. Théramex has built an especially solid reputation in France and Italy as a company dedicated to women’s health and gynecology.

In addition to Teva’s upfront cash payment, Merck will be eligible to receive certain performance-based milestone payments. The transaction is expected to close towards the end of this year or in early 2011.

Jordanian pharmaceutical Hikma is expanding its global injectables portfolio and its U.S. market presence through the acquisition of Baxter’s multi-source injectables business for $112 million in cash. The deal will position Hikma as the second largest injectables supplier in the United States with a combined market share of more than 15 percent.

Biotech companies also reaped the rewards of a busy week of dealmaking. MacroGenics enriched its coffers with two drug discovery deals with big pharmaceutical companies—Boehringer Ingelheim and Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) will use its antibody platform directed at multiple targets. Rockville, Maryland-based MacroGenics expects to receive at least $60 million from Boehringer and could get up to $210 million more for the successful development of each of up to ten therapeutics developed by the collaboration.

The collaboration with Pfizer is focused on cancer. Financial terms were not disclosed. (See story)

Seattle’s Immune Design granted MedImmune exclusive worldwide rights to use its novel early stage adjuvant in vaccines for select infectious diseases. In return, Immune Design will get an upfront licensing fee and potential development, regulatory and commercial milestones of up to $212 million, in addition to royalty payments on sales of marketed products.

Amicus Therapeutics (NASDAQ:FOLD) licensed Amigal, its late stage Fabry Disease drug, to GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) for $30 million upfront, up to $170 million in milestone payments, as well as significant royalties on global sales. GSK is also taking a 20 percent stake in the New Jersey biotech for another $31 million. As part of their agreement, the companies also intend to advance clinical studies exploring the co-administration of Amigal with enzyme replacement therapy to treat Fabry Disease.

Finally, Pacific Biosciences (NASDAQ:PACB) went public, pricing 12.5 million shares at $16 each to raise $200 million. The company is developing DNA sequencing machines that promise to sequence the genome faster, cheaper, and more accurately. (See story)

Deals for the Week Ending October 29, 2010
Global Venture Financings
Company Location Amount Raised (USD M) Principal Focus
aTyr Pharma San Diego, CA 23.0 Therapeutics-protein drugs
ContraFect New York, NY 14.2 Therapeutics-infectious
Solx Sudbury, MA 3.7 Medical devices
CardioNexus Houston, TX N/A Diagnostics
Cappella Galway, Ireland 14.6 Medical devices
Mind-NRG Geneva, Switzerland 14.0 Therapeutics-CNS
EntreChem Oviedo, Spain 2.0 Therapeutics-cancer
Biopta Glasgow, Scotland 0.4 Tools/Technology
Curefab Munich, Germany N/A Diagnostics
Total Raised US 40.9
Total Raised Non-US 31.0
Grants and Contracts
Company Funding/Contracting Agency Amount Raised (USD M) Principal Focus
Grants
Rockland Immunochemicals NIH Phase I SBIR N/A Generic antibodies
Galapagos (Belgium) Flemish agency for Innovation 5.1 Cystic fibrosis
Contracts
SAIC US DoD 3-year task order 23.0 Biometrics
Total Grants and Contracts 28.1
PUBLIC FINANCINGS
Company Ticker Amount
Raised (USD M)
Financing Type
Sihuan Pharmaceutical HK:0460 741 IPO
Pacific Biosciences PACB 200 IPO
Stentys Euronext:STNT 31.9 IPO
PURE Bioscience PURE 2.4 PIPE
DARA BioSciences DARA 1.4 PIPE-RDO
InVivo Therapeutics OTC:NVIV 10.5 PIPE
AVEO Pharmaceuticals AVEO 61.0 PIPE
PharmAthene PIP 15.0 PIPE-RDO
Sirona Biochem (Canada) TSX-V:SBM 1.0 PIPE
Ariad Pharmaceuticals ARIA 59.2 Follow on
Oncolytics Biotech (Canada) ONCY 24.0 Follow on
Sigma-Aldrich SIAL 300.0 Debt
Omeros OMER 25.0 Right to percentage of net proceeds
Ore Pharmaceuticals OTC:ORXE 5.3 Debt and equity
Amicus Therapeutics FOLD 31.0 GSK takes 20 percent equity stake
TOTAL PUBLIC FINANCINGS-US 710.8
NON-US 797.9
M&A
Acquirer Target Deal Value
(USD M)
Focus
Stryker Boston Scientific's neurovascular business 1,500.0 Medical devices
Sanofi-Aventis (France) BMP Sunstone (China) 520.6 Specialty pharma
Teva Pharmaceuticals (Israel) Theramex (Merck KGaA-Germany) 367.0 Women's health
Green Plains Renewable Energy Global Ethanol 169.0 Renewable fuels
Hikma Pharmaceuticals (Jordan) Baxter's Injectables business 112.0 Generic injectables
Kadmon Pharmaceuticals Three Rivers Pharmaceuticals 100.0 Specialty pharma
Endologix Nellix 54.0 Medical devices
Colorplast (Denmark) Mpathy Medical 35.0 Female pelvic health
Leadtec Systems Australia Mimotopes (Commonwealth Biotechnologies) 1.1 Tools/Technology
Alliances
Company/Licensee Company/Licenser Deal Value
(USD M)
Focus
Boehringer Ingelheim (Germany) MacroGenics 2,160.0 Antibody Therapeutics Alliance
MedImmune (AstraZeneca-UK) Immune Design 212.0 Vaccine Adjuvant License and Collaboration
GlaxoSmithKline (UK) Amicus Therapeutics 200.0 Fabry Disease License
Pfizer and four other pharmas Ablexis 55.0 Drug Discovery Platform License
Biovail (Valeant) Acadia Pharmaceuticals 8.8 Conclusion of Parkinson's Collaboration
NeuroVive (Sweden) to-BBB (the Netherlands) N/A Neurology Partnership
Millennium (Takeda-Japan) Therasis N/A Drug Discovery Collaboration
Celtic Therapeutics Resolvyx Pharmaceuticals N/A Opthalmic drug Option agreement
Pfizer MacroGenics N/A Cancer License and Collaboration
Abbott Laboratories Myriad Genetics N/A Companion Diagnostic Cooperative Agreement
Jingxin Pharmaceutical (China_ Evotec (Germany) N/A Insomnia Drug License
Seattle Genetics Compugen (Israel) N/A Oncology Collaboration and License Option

Source: Biotech Ends October With Almost $1B in IPOs, $3B in M&A Activity, $3B in Possible Partnerships