Pfizer completes AZ antibiotics acquisition

Pfizer has completed its acquisition of a portfolio of antibiotics from AstraZeneca, earning the UK company more than half a billion dollars up front.

The deal was announced back in August and could be worth more than $1.5 billion for AstraZeneca (AZ), which has been selling off drugs outside its areas of focus to underwrite R&D and support earnings.

AZ will receive $550 million up front from Pfizer, plus a further $175 million in 2019 for marketing and development rights to the late-stage antibiotics business in all markets where AZ holds rights.

A further $250 million in commercial, manufacturing and regulatory milestone payments, plus up to $600 million in sales-related payments could also be coming AZ’s way.

The agreement includes the marketing and development rights to the newly approved EU drug Zavicefa (ceftazidime-avibactam), the marketed agents Merrem/Meronem (meropenem) and Zinforo (ceftaroline fosamil), and the clinical development assets aztreonam-avibactam (ATM-AVI) and CXL.

Zavicefta specifically addresses certain multi-drug resistant Gram-negative infections, including those resistant to carbapenem antibiotics, one of the most significant unmet medical needs in bacterial infections treated with hospital anti-infectives.

Allergan, Takeda, and Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma hold rights to some of the drugs in certain territories.

Pfizer said the new acquisition would help increase revenues for its Essential Health business, which also includes generics and biosimilars.

John Young, group president, Pfizer Essential Health, said: “The addition of AstraZeneca’s complementary small molecule anti-infectives portfolio enhances our global expertise and offerings in an increasingly important area of therapeutics that addresses the public health needs of patients and healthcare professionals. Additionally this acquisition is an example of how we are focusing our investments to drive sustainable revenue growth potential for our Essential Health business.”

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