MORRISVILLE, N.C. & COLLEGE STATION, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies U.S.A. Inc. (FDBU), a FUJIFILM Corporation subsidiary, today announced the completion of its acquisition of Kalon Biotherapeutics LLC, marking an important new chapter in the emergence of the Texas biosciences industry as a center for world-class development and manufacturing of life-saving biopharmaceuticals and biotechnology while providing FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies with expanded capacity for its growing vaccine capabilities. The completion of the previously announced Purchase Interest Agreement of Kalon Biotherapeutics, LLC, was made with the owners of Kalon: the State of Texas, acting by and through the Office of the Governor, and The Texas A&M University System. The announcement was made jointly today by Governor Rick Perry; officials of FUJIFILM Corporation, FDBU and Mitsubishi Corporation; Kalon Biotherapeutics LLC; and the Texas A&M System. Going forward, the company is now known as FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies Texas, LLC.
“Healthcare business, above all, the pharmaceutical business, is one of Fujifilm's focal areas,” said Shigehiro Nakajima, President & COO, FUJIFILM Holdings Corporation. "This acquisition provides an important addition to our business, bringing together diverse capabilities and technical expertise in the area of biopharmaceuticals.”
“This acquisition further reinforces Fujifilm’s global leadership and commitment to the biopharmaceutical industry," said Steve Bagshaw, CEO, FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies. "Our scientific and manufacturing leadership will be strengthened by adding Kalon’s viral and cell culture vaccine expertise and capabilities to our existing competencies in microbial, mammalian and insect cell process development, analytics, and commercial production.”
Founded in 2011 by the A&M System, Kalon is a biopharmaceutical contract manufacturing organization (CMO) with advanced technologies and facilities. It is a key subcontractor to one of the three Centers for Innovation in Advanced Development and Manufacturing (CIADM) awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to develop and manufacture medical countermeasures to protect public health in emergencies, including incidents of bioterrorism or an outbreak of pandemic influenza. The State of Texas provided funding for the development and support of this center though the Texas Emerging Technology Fund.
“Today’s signing represents an important next step and an exciting new chapter for the State of Texas, which is fast becoming a global leader in biotechnology and pharmaceutical manufacturing,” Gov. Perry said. “The Texas A&M Center for Innovation in Advanced Development and Manufacturing is at the forefront of an exciting new method to produce life-saving treatments and vaccines, and I’m proud of the role the state has played in helping shape Texas into America’s ‘Third Coast’ in biotechnology.”
FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies, a world leader in cGMP biologics manufacturing, is taking an ownership position in Kalon Biotherapeutics, allowing an expansion of Fujifilm’s capabilities to include viruses and viral/vaccine-based products and services. This investment will also provide leveraged biotechnology workforce recruitment to Texas and drive the state’s expansion in biotechnology and biopharmaceuticals.
“Fujifilm’s acquisition of Kalon proves the tremendous value of public-private partnerships, and the importance of creating an environment in which they can succeed,” said John Sharp, Chancellor of The Texas A&M University System. “The State of Texas and the A&M System are delivering on a joint promise to help businesses develop and to create jobs. I applaud the Texas A&M System Board of Regents for their unwavering support in building Kalon and positioning it for this transaction.”
Texas has a dynamic biotechnology marketplace that yields an estimated annual economic impact of $75 billion. In 2013, one out of every fifteen U.S. biotechnology establishments was located in Texas. The establishment and growth of the biotech industry in Texas is largely due to the vision and leadership of the A&M System, with the support of Governor Rick Perry. Under Texas A&M System’s leadership, the Bryan-College Station region has become a premier biotech location and international leader in all three areas of discovery, combining plant, animal and human scientific breakthroughs. Biotech companies from across the globe are utilizing the infrastructure pipeline at the A&M System and the surrounding corridor for speed-to-market services.
“When we first created Kalon in 2011, we set out to change the world through the rapid production of life-saving vaccines and therapeutics. The vision and investment by the state of Texas and the Texas A&M System have been critical to Kalon’s success to date,” said Kalon Founding President Andrew Strong. “Now, with the combined strength and capability of FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies, the world’s leading global biotechnology service company, and Kalon, I have no doubt that we are able to emphatically answer the world-wide call for the discovery, testing and manufacturing of vaccines and therapeutics that can prevent diseases or cure the critically ill.”
Per the Interest Purchase Agreement, FDBU acquired 49 percent of the total membership interests in Kalon, and will be entitled to appoint a majority of Kalon’s board members. Hereafter, FDBU may increase its interest share up to 100 percent, based on achievement of certain milestones. FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies will support current Kalon operations at the National Center for Therapeutics Manufacturing and a pandemic vaccine manufacturing facility currently under construction. The Kalon innovative facility design utilizes state-of-the-art mobile clean rooms that can be operated independently or in various paired arrangements to meet customer project needs. The acquisition will expand FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies’ leadership in applying most advanced single-use technology to include high-containment biomanufacturing capabilities. Further, it safeguards continued close business collaboration between the A&M System and the State of Texas to ensure maximum support for customer programs coming to the Kalon facilities.
An event to commemorate the deal-closing, including the signing of a proclamation, will be held today at the George H.W. Bush Library in College Station, Texas, attended by Governor Rick Perry; John Sharp, Chancellor, Texas A&M University System; Shigehiro Nakajima, President & COO, FUJIFILM Holdings Corporation; Yasuyuki Sugiura, President & CEO, Mitsubishi Corporation Americas; and Nozomu Takaoka, Japan’s Consul General in Houston.
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About FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies
FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies U.S.A., Inc., is an industry-leading biologics contract development and manufacturing organization located in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. FUJIFILM Diosynth has over twenty-five years of combined experience in the development and manufacturing of recombinant proteins, vaccines, monoclonal antibodies, among other large molecules expressed in a wide array of microbial, mammalian, and insect cell line systems. The company offers a comprehensive list of services, from cell line development using its proprietary pAVEway™ microbial and Apollo™ cell line systems, to process development, analytical development, to clinical and commercial manufacturing. FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies is also located in Billingham, UK , where it is called FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies UK Limited. Both sites are FDA-approved for the production of commercial products. For more information, go to: www.fujifilmdiosynth.com
FUJIFILM Holdings Corporation, Tokyo, Japan brings continuous innovation and leading-edge products to a broad spectrum of industries, including: healthcare, with medical systems, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics; graphic systems; highly functional materials, such as flat-panel display materials; optical devices, such as broadcast and cinema lenses; digital imaging; and document products. These are based on a vast portfolio of chemical, mechanical, optical, electronic, software and production technologies. In the year ended March 31, 2014, the company had global revenues of $23.7 billion, at an exchange rate of 103 yen to the dollar. Fujifilm is committed to environmental stewardship and good corporate citizenship. For more information, please visit: www.fujifilmholdings.com.
Kalon Biotherapeutics is a private company formed by The Texas A&M University System in spring 2011. It was formed to provide advanced biologics development manufacturing in the National Center for Therapeutics Manufacturing (NCTM), a state‐of‐the‐art cGMP flexible biomanufacturing facility that utilizes self‐contained, mobile clean rooms (MCRs) for conducting multiple biomanufacturing projects in a ballroom environment, all under a single roof. Kalon enables rapid, cost‐effective drug development through a flexible and scalable clinical manufacturing platform with capabilities to support all classes of biological drug products, including vaccines, monoclonal antibodies, cellular and gene therapies. Kalon is a key partner of the Texas Biocorridor’s “One‐Stop‐ Shop” Biotech Infrastructure Pipeline, to discover new therapies in plant, animal and human health; perform preclinical evaluations; and utilize flexible, scalable Biotech Infrastructure Pipeline biopharmaceutical manufacturing, all in one convenient location. www.kalonbio.com
About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a statewide network of eleven universities, seven state agencies, two service units and a comprehensive health science center. Members of the A&M System educate more than 131,000 students and reach another 22 million people through service each year. With more than 24,000 faculty and staff, the A&M System has a physical presence in 250 of the state’s 254 counties and a programmatic presence in them all. In 2012, the A&M System’s externally funded research expenditures exceeded $820 million, helping drive the state’s economy. For more information, visit: www.tamus.edu.