Galapagos negotiating with ten pharmaceutical companies
On 22 November this year the biotech company Galapagos announced promising results on a study into a cure for rheumatism. Galapagos CEO, Onno van de Stolpe, then subtly added that the company was seeking a partner to finance the further development of the drug, after which the number of offers from pharmaceutical companies doubled. He is presently in talks with ten of them, and Galapagos hopes to reach a deal by the end of the year or by early next year at the latest. “We are in the middle of a due diligence process in which we are taking a closer look at the activities and books of the various companies. After this we will discuss figures, after which it is up to the Galapagos board to decide. All ten companies are genuinely interested in coming on board,” Van de Stolpe said. An agreement with a pharmaceutical company must give Galapagos the means to further test the rheumatism drug and, at a later stage, possibly market it too. It will be launched in 2016 at the earliest, but in the meantime billions of euros are required. The drug is in the second research phase, and still has a long road ahead of it. The results announced last month by the company were based on some 40 patients, with further tests having to be conducted on thousands in due course. The pharmaceutical industry makes around 30 billion euros a year from rheumatism.