Desitin Retains Edgemont Capital Partners as Exclusive Financial Advisor And Representative
Desitin Arzneimittel GmbH and Edgemont Capital Partners today announced that Desitin has engaged Edgemont as its exclusive financial advisor and representative. Edgemont will work to secure a U.S. commercialization partner for the Company’s novel, once- daily, sustained release oral formulation of oxcarbazepine. Oxcarbazepine is currently marketed in the U.S. exclusively by Novartis under the brand name Trileptal(tm) as a twice-a-day therapy for the treatment of epilepsy, and had U.S. sales of $212 million in 2002.
“We are excited at the prospect of pursuing this novel drug as our first initiative to enter the U.S., the world’s leading pharmaceutical market. We believe that our formulation may have significant clinical benefits over the existing formulation, and as a result would offer a substantial commercial opportunity,” stated Desitin’s board member Martin Zentgraf. “We are the only company other than Novartis with experience marketing oxcarbazepine products worldwide; we have achieved leading market shares in our key European markets with our existing oxcarbazepine brands Timox(tm) and Apydan(tm). However, we believe that we will achieve greater success for this exciting product in the U.S. market, once approved, by working with a partner on its’ commercialization. We believe that Edgemont’s expertise makes them an excellent choice to pursue potential partnerships on our behalf.” Oxcarbazepine, a 10-keto analogue of carbamazepine, is the first in a new class of high potential anti-epileptic agents. It is effective in treating partial seizures with or without secondary generalization, both in mono and add-on therapy. In addition, Novartis is currently conducting clinical trials to evaluate the potential utility of Trileptal(tm) in treating neuropathic pain and bipolar disorders. Oxcarbazepine has favorable pharmacological properties, both in efficacy and safety, compared to its precursor carbamazepine. Both oxcarbazepine and its metabolite elicit anticonvulsant activity.
Desitin’s oxcarbazepine sustained release formulation was developed in-house by the Company’s own researchers, and is in late-stage clinical trials in Europe. A marketing authorization is expected in the first European Community (EC) Member State in 2006.
“This novel, proprietary formulation provides us a significant opportunity to capitalize on our oxcarbazepine development expertise, expanding our CNS franchise and laying the foundation for future initiatives in the U.S. market,” commented Holger Koehler, Desitin’s Manager for late-stage clinics and new business. “It also represents the next phase of our corporate strategy of leveraging our drug development expertise to pursue larger commercial opportunities outside our existing markets, particularly in the U.S.”
Desitin Arzneimittel GmbH is a Hamburg-based specialty pharmaceutical company focused on central nervous system (CNS) disorders. Founded in 1919, Desitin has a long history of CNS pharmaceutical product innovation, and is a leading European developer, manufacturer, marketer and distributor of prescription pharmaceuticals for the treatment of epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease. Desitin is the market leader for anti- epileptics in Germany.
Edgemont Capital Partners (New York) is a specialty life sciences investment banking and advisory firm that provides mergers and acquisitions advisory, capital raising and pharmaceutical product partnering services to emerging and mid-sized healthcare companies.
At Edgemont Capital Partners
David K. Blume, Managing Director
Phone: 212-867-8935 Fax: 212-214-0911
Jeff B. Swearingen, Principal
Phone: 212-867-8935 Fax: 212-937-3816