Bausch + Lomb completes XIIDRA acquisition to fortify dry eye offering
Bausch + Lomb Corporation (NYSE/TSX: BLCO), a prominent global eye health company, has successfully wrapped up its acquisition of XIIDRA (lifitegrast ophthalmic solution) 5%. XIIDRA is a non-steroid eye drop specifically designed for treating the signs and symptoms of dry eye disease (DED) with a focus on inflammation associated with this condition, along with acquiring select ophthalmology assets.
Under the agreement, Bausch + Lomb, through an affiliate, secured XIIDRA and other ophthalmology assets from Novartis for up to $2.5 billion. This includes an initial cash payment of $1.75 billion, along with potential milestone obligations of up to $750 million based on sales thresholds and pipeline commercialization. Bausch + Lomb also welcomed the XIIDRA sales force into its ranks. The acquisition was funded through a previously announced offering of $1.4 billion in 8.375% senior secured notes due 2028 and $500 million in new term B loans under an incremental term loan facility.
In addition to XIIDRA, Bausch + Lomb’s portfolio for dry eye management includes eye and contact lens drops from both its consumer brand franchises and pharmaceutical business. This comprehensive approach includes MIEBO (perfluorohexyloctane ophthalmic solution), which recently made its debut in the United States as the FDA’s first and only approved prescription eye drop targeting tear evaporation in dry eye disease.
Brent Saunders, Chairman and CEO of Bausch + Lomb, emphasized the company’s commitment to enhancing dry eye treatment options, stating, “We expect to quickly take a leading position in the growing prescription dry eye category with the XIIDRA acquisition and MIEBO launch and, importantly, help the millions of patients not currently receiving adequate treatment for dry eye disease.”
Dry eye disease is a global concern, affecting an estimated 739 million individuals worldwide, including approximately 38 million in the United States alone. The U.S. prescription dry eye disease market is poised for substantial growth, with projections of a double-digit compounded annual growth rate over the next five years.
In this acquisition, Bausch + Lomb also acquired libvatrep (also known as SAF312), an investigational compound under study for treating chronic ocular surface pain. Additionally, they gained AcuStream technology, an investigational device with the potential to facilitate precise dosing and accurate delivery of specific topical ophthalmic medications to the eye. Libvatrep is currently in Phase 2b development, with results anticipated in the second half of 2023.