Open Orphan plans for possible spin out of non-core assets

Dublin-listed pharmaceutical services company Open Orphan said it is plannign for a possible spin-out of some of its non-core development intellectual property assets.

The company said it believed the assets in question were best developed separately from the core services businesses to maximise shareholder value and could secure separate financial resources, enable accelerated development of these assets and achievement of commercial milestones.

Open Orphan said the assets include potential respiratory treatment HVO-001 but do not include the equity interests in Imutex Limited and PrEP Biopharm Limited.

“Over the last year we have been busy transforming Open Orphan into a profitable enterprise with a world leading position testing vaccines and antivirals using human challenge studies. We now have an opportunity to deliver significant further shareholder value by the demerger of these non-core assets,” said executive chairman Cathal Friel. “Their development and commercialisation can be accelerated through the demerger, which offers the opportunity to access financing as a separate public company listed on AIM and a separate business focussed on the successful commercialisation of pharmaceutical products.

Further information is being sent to shareholders, and Open Orphan said it would proceed with obtaining the necessary approvals.

“It is well known in the global public markets that value is better recognised in the life sciences space when profitable services businesses are viewed separately from pharmaceutical development businesses that have different funding needs,” Mr Friel said. “This is now an excellent opportunity for shareholders in Open Orphan to maximise value through separate shareholdings in both a profitable pharma services company as well as an exciting pharma products commercialisation company. I believe that both are well positioned for success as we head into a decade of exponential capital investment across a broad range of infectious disease and respiratory illnesses.”

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