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GPC: A Model for the Rest of Us

Executive Summary

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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German Biotech: Coalescing around the Haves

Positive signs are coming out of German biotech for the first time in years. Scientific output remains strong. The subsector boasts its first profitable pharmaceutical-oriented company; several on- or near-market products, and even a nascent IPO market. The fact that dozens of companies are expected to go bust this year is another sign of the industry's maturation. The long-awaited consolidation predicted in the wake of the Neuer Markt demise is seemingly finally happening. The have-nots are finally beginning to cluster around the haves.

German Biotech: Coalescing around the Haves

Positive signs are coming out of German biotech for the first time in years. Scientific output remains strong. The subsector boasts its first profitable pharmaceutical-oriented company; several on- or near-market products, and even a nascent IPO market. The fact that dozens of companies are expected to go bust this year is another sign of the industry's maturation. The long-awaited consolidation predicted in the wake of the Neuer Markt demise is seemingly finally happening. The have-nots are finally beginning to cluster around the haves.

GPC Looks to Nasdaq for the Best of Both Worlds

A late-June listing may help Germany's GPC Biotech AG attract investor interest and it certainly reinforces the firm's increasing Americanization. Yet the performance of lead candidate satraplatin remains the strongest determinant of GPC's valuation and near-term success.

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