TOKYO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Kubota Pharmaceutical Holdings Co., Ltd. (Tokyo 4596, “Kubota Pharma”), a clinical-stage ophthalmology company committed to translating innovation into a diverse portfolio of drugs and devices to preserve and restore vision for millions of people worldwide, and SBI Holdings, Inc. (“SBI”), a financial services and asset management company based in Japan, announced today the signing of a non-binding letter of intent (“LOI”) to establish a joint venture that will organize and manage special purpose entities to finance the development of ophthalmic drugs and devices. The LOI contemplates that the joint venture will be funded 51% by Kubota Pharma and 49% by SBI. Kubota Pharma and SBI have entered negotiations for a definitive joint venture agreement.
Concurrent with the negotiation of the definitive joint venture agreement, the parties intend to negotiate a separate definitive agreement to establish and fund the joint venture’s first special purpose entity, which is expected to be focused on mobile healthcare (mHealth) applications in the field of ophthalmology. mHealth refers to the usage of mobile communications technology and devices to enhance access to healthcare information, improve distribution of routine and emergency health services, and provide diagnostic services. In addition, through this first special purpose entity, Kubota Pharma will explore potential development and commercialization synergies between the mHealth platform and its drug product candidates already in development.
Kubota Pharma’s mission to eradicate blindness through the development of ophthalmic drugs and devices, and SBI’s business focus in the medical and pharmaceuticals arena, contributed to collaborative discussions which led to the signing of the LOI to form the joint venture to develop ophthalmic drugs and devices. This joint venture enables Kubota Pharma to potentially expand its development pipeline and capabilities to further its mission.
About Kubota Pharmaceutical Holdings Co., Ltd.
Kubota Pharmaceutical Holdings Co., Ltd. (Tokyo 4596) is a Japan-based corporation and the parent company of Acucela Inc. committed to translating innovation into a diverse portfolio of drugs and devices to preserve and restore vision for millions of people worldwide. Kubota Pharma’s pipeline includes drug candidates and therapeutics for the treatment of retinitis pigmentosa, proliferative diabetic retinopathy, diabetic macular edema, intermediate AMD, Stargardt disease and cataracts. For additional information please visit: http://www.kubotaholdings.co.jp/en/
About SBI Holdings, Inc.
SBI Holdings (SBI Group) was established in 1999 as a pioneer of Internet-based financial services in Japan, and currently has formed the world’s first Internet-based financial conglomerate, providing financial services in a broad range of fields including securities, banking and insurance. In addition to this business, there are the Asset Management Business, whose prime focus is investment in venture companies, an activity undertaken since before the Group’s founding, and the Biotechnology-related Business, which is embarking on global expansion from R&D and product development to sales in the pharmaceuticals, health foods and cosmetic fields.
Certain statements contained in this press release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Any statements contained in this press release that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed to be forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements include our ability to establish a joint venture with SBI, including the proposed terms of such joint venture; our intention to pursue mobile healthcare applications in the field of ophthalmology; and our ability to successfully develop and commercialize any product candidates pursued by the proposed joint venture. These statements are based on current assumptions that involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause the actual results, events or developments to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, include, but are not limited to: we and SBI may be unable to complete negotiations and establish the proposed joint venture; any investigational product candidates pursued by the joint venture may not demonstrate the expected safety and efficacy; any product candidates pursued by the joint venture may fail in development, may not receive required regulatory approvals, or may be delayed to a point where they are not commercially viable; new developments in the intensely competitive ophthalmic pharmaceutical market may require changes in the joint venture’s proposed clinical trial plans or limit the potential benefits of investigational product candidates; as well as the other risks identified in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof and we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements, and readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. For a detailed discussion of the foregoing risks and other risk factors, please refer to our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which are available on Kubota Pharmaceutical Holdings investor relations website (http://www.kubotaholdings.co.jp/en/ir/) and on the SEC’s website (http://www.sec.gov).
“Kubota,” “Acucela” and the Kubota logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Kubota Pharmaceutical Holdings or Acucela in various jurisdictions.