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Celtic Therapeutics Announces First Closing and Two Senior Appointments


12/22/2008 8:36:07 AM

NEW YORK and CHARLOTTE AMALIE, U.S. Virgin Islands, Dec. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Celtic Therapeutics Management L.L.L.P. ("Celtic Therapeutics"), a global private equity firm focused on building a diversified portfolio of mid-to-late stage drug development programs, today announced the first closing for Celtic Therapeutics Holdings L.P. and two senior appointments. The management team plans to deploy the capital from this first closing for initial product acquisitions that are already well advanced in the negotiation and due diligence process, while continuing to focus on raising funds towards their $700 MM objective.

Celtic Therapeutics Holdings L.P. is a successor fund to Celtic Pharmaceutical Holdings L.P., Celtic Therapeutics is led by biotechnology industry veteran, Stephen Evans-Freke and Dr. Peter Corr, former Senior VP for Science and Technology and Head of Research and Development at Pfizer and former President of Research and Development at Warner Lambert / Parke Davis Pharmaceuticals. Also, Michael Forer has joined as Partner in charge of European Origination, based in Lausanne, Switzerland. Mr. Forer was previously co-founder of Bioscience Managers Limited, a London-based advisory and private equity firm and, prior to that, a member of the life science investment team at Rothschild Asset Management managing a $1bn portfolio of life science investments.

Separately, Celtic Therapeutics also announced today the appointment of Dr. Tomasz Sablinski as Managing Director in charge of European Development and a member of the Executive Committee of Celtic Therapeutics Development Services. He was previously Vice President at Novartis in charge of US Clinical Development and Medical Affairs. Dr. Sablinski joins Dr. Patrick O'Connor, Global Head of Clinical Development, and Dr. Robert Ryan, Global Head of Regulatory and Pre-clinical Development, on the Executive Committee of Celtic Therapeutics Development Services, both of whom are also part of the Celtic Pharma team.

"With substantial commitments for our new fund now in hand, the majority of these from pension funds and investment management groups who participated in the predecessor fund, Celtic Pharmaceutical Holdings L.P., we are entering the new year with the confidence that we will be able to achieve our fundraising objectives for Celtic Therapeutics in 2009 despite the uncertain global economic climate," commented Mr. Evans-Freke. "Celtic Therapeutics is well positioned to take advantage of the extraordinary opportunities in the US and internationally to acquire some of the most exciting mid-stage drug development programs in the capital-starved global biotech sector."

"The pharmaceutical industry is facing a crisis, given the continued weakness of late-stage internal pipelines, and the overwhelming majority of both public and private biotechnology companies are essentially unable to access new capital from most traditional sources," commented Dr. Corr, "Celtic's business model is not only a very timely investment opportunity, but also urgently needed if important new medicines are to be available for patients worldwide."

About Celtic Therapeutics

Founded in 2007, Celtic Therapeutics, is a successor firm to Celtic Pharma Management L.P., pursuing the same investment model on a larger scale. As a global private equity firm, it will identify and acquire therapeutic products and related diagnostics in clinical development, in order to build one of the most valued portfolios of late-stage drug development programs in the global biopharmaceutical industry. Based in the US Virgin Islands, Celtic Therapeutics is establishing acquisition, origination and drug development operations in New York City and Switzerland. For further information, please visit www.celtictherapeutics.com.

CONTACT: Kathy Armstrong of Celtic Therapeutics, +1-212-616-4042,
kathy.armstrong@celtictherapeutics.com; or Media, FD US, Robert Stanislaro,
+1-212-850-5657, robert.stanislaro@fd.com, or FD UK, David Yates, or Emma
Thompson, +44(0)207-831-3113, david.yates@fd.com, both for Celtic
Therapeutics

Web site: http://www.celtictherapeutics.com/



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