Poolbeg Pharma building a “conveyor belt of out licensing” says chairman


Poolbeg Pharma PLC (AIM:POLB), a spin out company from Open Orphan PLC (AIM:ORPH, OTC:OPORF) focusing on infectious diseases, says the key to its success lies in its “conveyor belt of out licensing” opportunities, according to chairman Cathal Friel.

Speaking to Proactive, Friel said the problem with many small pharma companies is the fascination over one product, which often has only a small chance of success.

“The magic is we’re doing a lot of products in the preclinical stage, taking them into the clinic for phase one to then start out-licensing.”

Out licensing is the process by which pharmaceuticals companies sell the rights to a clinical stage asset to other firms for further development, production, or marketing.

READ: Poolbeg Pharma plans phase Ib trial for influenza drug next summer

Most drug developers wait until the end of phase II to do this, spending usually tens of millions of pounds in the process.

Friel, who is also chairman and co-founder of Open Orphan, re-assured shareholders that it expects cash inflow to start within the next 18 months, citing success achieved by Evotec, the Germany drug company as the benchmark.

“Evotec moved from clinical trials about six years ago, going from a couple EUR100mln to EUR7bn. Our plan is to do something like that.

“We might not get the EUR7bn that quick, but that’s what’s out there,” said Friel.


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