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GPC Leads German Dealmaking

Executive Summary

Germany's GPC Biotech AG has already signed two deals with pharmaceutical companies this year. Both partners are fellow Germans, but neither deal would have happened had GPC not chosen to make itself international through acquiring privately held US oncology company Mitotix Inc. last March.

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Germany's GPC Biotech has taken a frugal and tortuous journey from platform to product company. As the customer base for its new-target discovery platform grew less receptive, it attempted to move its business towards products, but was prevented by its lack of management and its illiquid Neuer Markt shares. Thus it leveraged its Bristol-Myers connections to build an oncology team and create a pipeline, at the same time largely refocusing the company on in-licensing. In the meantime, rather than disbanding its discovery work, GPC is trying to reorient its entire platform towards applied uses in order to attract corporate funding and to feed its own pipeline. The result: a business model increasingly relevant to a financially troubled and largely directionless biotech industry.

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