Oxford Biomedica eyes ABL Europe acquisition to bolster cell and gene therapy CDMO operations


Oxford Biomedica plc and Institut Mérieux SA have entered exclusive negotiations concerning Oxford Biomedica’s proposed acquisition of ABL Europe SAS. This acquisition, valued at €15 million, would significantly elevate Oxford Biomedica’s standing as a world-leading, quality and innovation-focused Cell and Gene Therapy CDMO. ABL Europe, a European Contract Development and Manufacturing Organization (CDMO) specialized in viral vector development, will add considerable muscle to Oxford Biomedica’s operations.

Oxford Biomedica Targets EU Footprint and Client-Focused Solutions

Dr. Frank Mathias, CEO of Oxford Biomedica, stated that the acquisition is aimed at gaining a strong foothold in the European Union. It will augment Oxford Biomedica’s capabilities and client-focused solutions in the cell and gene therapy field. The deal would not only meet rising client demand but also enhance Oxford Biomedica’s flexibility, process development, and early-stage manufacturing capabilities. The CEO confirmed the company’s enthusiasm about the potential onboarding of ABL Europe staff and Institut Mérieux as a long-term shareholder.

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Institut Mérieux Foresees Expanded Development Prospects

Michel Baguenault, CEO of Institut Mérieux, welcomed the partnership as an opportunity for ABL Europe to access innovative technologies and expand its offerings. As a long-term shareholder, Institut Mérieux aims to support Oxford Biomedica’s commitment to addressing significant health challenges through its cell and gene therapy expertise.

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Boosting Oxford Biomedica’s Capabilities and Global Reach

ABL Europe’s assets will contribute significantly to Oxford Biomedica’s global strategy. The transaction, if completed, would result in expanded viral vector offerings, increased processing capacity, and a broader customer base in Europe. ABL Europe, with its existing revenue forecast of approximately €15 million for the year ending 31 December 2023, would allow Oxford Biomedica to attain European batch releases and improve its business development positioning.

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Terms and Future Investments

The proposed deal includes issuing new Oxford Biomedica ordinary shares at a rate determined by the market’s 6-month Volume Weighted Average Price (VWAP) and the VWAP between the announcement and completion date. Additionally, Institut Mérieux commits to provide €20 million of further funding to Oxford Biomedica by the end of Q3 2024, and aims to acquire up to €10 million of additional Oxford Biomedica shares to build its ownership stake.

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