Ascenion’s Portfolio Company VPM Acquired by SII

21 August 2018, Munich – Ascenion GmbH, the technology transfer partner of the Helmholtz Institute for Infection Research (HZI), has successfully negotiated the trade sale of the HZI spin-off Vakzine Projekt Management GmbH (VPM) to its longstanding partner, Serum Institute of India Pvt., Ltd. (SII), in an all-cash deal. 90% of the total shares were sold by Ascenion, Corvay GmbH and the Friends of the HZI. For strategic reasons, the Friends of the HZI will continue holding a 10% equity stake in VPM.

SII is the world's largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally. In 2012, the company licensed VPM’s tuberculosis vaccine VPM1002, and has closely collaborated with VPM ever since, advancing the candidate successfully through Phase II clinical trials. ‘We are delighted to have secured this deal. SII is the best partner we could imagine for VPM and their ambitious projects. SII not only has the resources and expertise to develop the vaccine to its full potential, but also shares VPM’s and our vision of making it available to people of all social classes around the world, at a fair price,’ Dr Christian Stein, CEO of Ascenion says.

Ascenion acquired a majority share in VPM in 2008 and has actively supported the company over the years. With a team of about 10 specialists, VPM offers dedicated consultancy services and developed a pipeline of innovative vaccine candidates licensed from various German research institutions.

VPM and SII have made a long-term commitment to continue VPM’s operations with the existing team in Hanover, Germany.

The major share of the proceeds of Ascenion’s sale of its equity position in VPM will be passed on to the LifeScience Foundation for the Promotion of Science and Research. The foundation will make the funds available for research projects of the endowing institutes, particularly the HZI.


About Ascenion

Ascenion is an independent technology transfer company focussing on the life sciences. It is partner to over 30 research organizations, universities and university hospitals in Germany and Europe, including life-science institutes of the Helmholtz and Leibniz Associations, the Charité, Hannover Medical School, the Medical University of Innsbruck and the University Medical Center Göttingen. Ascenion’s multidisciplinary, industry-experienced team works closely with its partners to tap the potential of their research by identifying promising results, obtaining patent protection, and turning pure science into applied technology. Particular strengths are spin-off support and project development, where early-stage projects are transformed into assets that attract potential investors and licensees. This has led to the founding of numerous new companies and the transfer of innovative medical approaches into approved drugs, changing the lives of thousands of patients. Profits from Ascenion’s operative business and exit proceeds flow via its parent company, the LifeScience Foundation for the Promotion of Science and Research, to fund further translational research at its partner institutes.

Ascenion has also initiated the pan European showcasing event BioVaria to stimulate deal making and early collaboration between Europe’s academia and the global life-sciences industry.

Further information at:


Dr Susanne Letzelter, Corporate Development, Ascenion GmbH
letzelter(at)ascenion(dot)de, +49 89 3188140

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