From bargain to multi-million exit
Enlarge image


From bargain to multi-million exit

12.12.2012 - Amgen will buy deCODE Genetics for US$415m in cash. The US firm gains access to a pioneering genetics platform that has a history with steep turns.

By purchasing deCODE of Iceland, Amgen will intensify efforts to boost its drive to develop targeted drugs. Founded in 1996, deCODE Genetics specialises in analysing and understanding the links between the genome and disease susceptibility, through using its access to a well-defined population in Iceland. The company has discovered genetic risk factors for a number of diseases ranging from cardiovascular illnesses to cancer. However, deCODE failed to fulfill early expectations after going public in 2000. In 2009, the biotech filed for bankruptcy protection, loaded with 13 years of unfulfilled hopes of investors and the influence of the financial crisis. However, the two renowned investors Polaris and Arch believed in the future of deCODE's business model and pulled the company from the stock market.

According to Fierce Biotech, Polaris and Arch purchased the assets originally for only US-$14m. "deCODE Genetics has built a world-class capability in the study of the genetics of human disease," said Robert Bradway, president and CEO at Amgen. "This capability will enhance our efforts to identify and validate human disease targets. This fits perfectly with our objective to pursue rapid development of relevant molecules that reach the right disease targets while avoiding investments in programs based on less well-validated targets." "One of the ways to truly realise the full value of human genetics, is to make our research synergistic with drug development efforts, where target discovery, validation and prioritisation efforts can be accelerated," said Kari Stefansson, founder and CEO at deCODE Genetics, who will stay with the company.



12.10.2015 Aberdeen University spinout TauRx has picked up US$135m from a VC financing round. The biopharma company plans to bring its dementia hopeful through Phase III trials.


09.10.2015 The US pricing controversy is reverberating halfway across the globe. Shield Therapeutics has taken its IPO plans off the table. Market conditions are too volatile, the company says.


07.10.2015 T-cell specialist Adaptimmune Therapeutics plc needs more space for its R&D in immuno-oncology. The expanding UK company is building a major facility that will house 200 staff.

Drug DiscoveryGermany

06.10.2015 Evotec has been hired by the US National Cancer Institute (NCI) to provide compound management services to the Chemical Biology Consortium. The goal: the discovery of new cancer treatments.

Drug DevelopmentUKBelgium

01.10.2015 Autoimmune disease specialist Apitope has raised €12m in a Series B financing round and is relocating its UK headquarters to Wales.

Drug DevelopmentFranceEUFinlandSpainItalyAustria

01.10.2015 Paris-based BEAM Alliance, a network of companies working on novel antibiotics founded earlier this year, has released its first position paper.


29.09.2015 Swiss CNS specialist Asceneuron SA has raised CHF30m (€27.5m) in a Series A financing, winning Paris-based Sofinnova Partners as its largest investor.


28.09.2015 US company Aduro Biotech has acquired Dutch monoclonal antibody discovery and development firm BioNovion for €29m plus milestones.


24.09.2015 Nutrition company Nestlé is teaming up with biopharmaceutical company AC Immune SA to develop a Tau diagnostic assay for early Alzheimer’s.


22.09.2015 Bayer has taken another step in its restructuring and development as a life sciences company after splitting from all its chemical divisions.


All Events

Current issue

All issues

Product of the week


Stock list

All quotes


  • ZELTIA (E)4.12 EUR22.99%
  • PHARMING (NL)0.32 EUR10.34%
  • PLETHORA (UK)3.12 GBP8.33%


  • THERAMETRICS (CH)0.03 CHF-25.00%
  • BAVARIAN NORDIC (D)35.60 EUR-8.48%


  • OREXO (S)65.00 SEK40.4%
  • ZEALAND PHARMA (DK)160.00 DKK31.1%
  • THROMBOGENICS (B)3.98 EUR30.1%


  • THERAMETRICS (CH)0.03 CHF-50.0%
  • GALAPAGOS (B)38.68 EUR-25.8%


  • KARO BIO (S)41.90 SEK5137.5%
  • CHRONTECH PHARMA (S)0.34 SEK466.7%
  • GALAPAGOS (B)38.68 EUR247.8%


  • NEOVACS (F)0.75 EUR-76.1%
  • BIOTEST (D)19.54 EUR-72.9%
  • EVOCUTIS (UK)0.15 GBP-68.7%

No liability assumed, Date: 12.10.2015