Schering Lets Metagen Flex Its Muscles
By spinning off 50% of Metagen, Schering gets an opportunity to concentrate on near-term projects, leaving Metagen free to seek funding for its early stage research from other partners
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A group of venture firms decided to buy Affymax from GSK at a bargain-basement valuation. They felt it had not merely the makings of a product company but could jumpstart the creation of a fully integrated biology/screening/chemistry drug discovery company. In effect, they bought, at a discount, a proto-Vertex that wouldn't have to wait nearly a decade to see a valuation explosion.
Germany's biotech investment has propelled a handful of companies onto the public markets a lot sooner than their US or UK counterparts. These German companies have followed aggressive acquisition strategies, most often buying into the US, sometimes using newly-minted Neuer Markt paper. Some are seeking through these acquisitions to both broaden their technology platform and acquire a product portfolio, hoping thereby to avoid the pitfalls of a narrow focus. It's too early to tell whether such a dual model will work. But the fact that Germany's young companies are finding their own approach to competing globally shows that the country's biotech initiative has already had some success.