Ipsen Strikes a $207 Million Deal to Buy Syntaxin

Published: Jul 15, 2013

Staying up-to-date has never been simpler. Sign up for the free GenePool newsletter today!


Oxford (UK), 15 July 2013 – Syntaxin, the life sciences company with expertise in the field of botulinum toxins announced today that it has been acquired by Ipsen, with which it has two major strategic alliances. Under the terms of the agreement, Ipsen will pay €28 million upfront, as well as further contingent payments that could reach €130 million or more depending on the achievement of development and commercial milestones. Furthermore, Syntaxin’s shareholders will receive the greater part of additional downstream payments related to the company’s most advanced asset, currently in Phase II clinical trials. Prior to the transaction, Ipsen owned c.10% of Syntaxin’s capital on a fully diluted basis.

Syntaxin’s research laboratories in Abingdon will remain as a centre of excellence for botulinum toxin engineering within the enlarged group, allowing Ipsen to leverage its own extensive expertise. The Abingdon site combines with Ipsen’s R&D at Wrexham (UK) and Les Ulis (France). Syntaxin has a wealth of experience in botulinum toxin biology, supported by an extensive patent portfolio – with 75 granted patents and over 130 patents pending.

Syntaxin and Ipsen started collaborating in 2010 and a year later they signed a global strategic partnership to explore the discovery and development of new compounds in the field of recombinant botulinum toxins. Syntaxin’s team has used its extensive expertise in the discovery of new therapeutic candidates while Ipsen applied its skills to pharmacological, preclinical and clinical assessment of the compounds.

Commenting on today’s announcement, Dr Melanie Lee, Chief Executive Officer of Syntaxin, said: “Our established and productive collaboration with Ipsen can now be fully exploited to bring new medicines to the market in a number of therapeutic areas.”

Dr Russell Greig, Chairman of Syntaxin, said: “This is an excellent deal for all parties. It has been a great pleasure working with the Syntaxin Executive team led by Dr Melanie Lee as CEO. Melanie will leave Syntaxin as will other members of her executive team including Dr Nigel Clark, CBO, Dr Phil Boyd, CFO and Dr Jon Court, CDO, who collectively have transformed Syntaxin over the last three years into a centre of excellence for botulinum toxin R&D”.

Syntaxin has a strong R&D portfolio which exploits the diversity of botulinum toxins, including recombinant botulinum toxins with improved designs and properties. The Company’s technology has been validated by the Phase II clinical trials of Syntaxin’s lead candidate. Dr Keith Foster and Dr John Chaddock, the co-founders of Syntaxin, will join Ipsen to help the Group build a highly differentiated and innovative toxin platform. Syntaxin’s recombinant toxin expertise and Ipsen’s know-how will be a powerful combination to release the full potential of the Targeted Secretion Inhibitors platform across Ipsen’s therapeutic areas of neurology, endocrinology and uro-oncology.

Syntaxin has been supported on this transaction by Rothschild and Allen & Overy LLP and Ipsen by Lazard Ltd., Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, and Bristows LLP(for IP matters).

For further information please contact:


Julia Phillips

Managing Director

Strategic Communications

F T I Consulting

+44 (0)20 7269 7187 direct

+44 (0)7770 827 263 mobile



Didier Véron

Vice President, Public Affairs and Corporate Communications

Tel.: +33 (0)1 58 33 51 16

Fax: +33 (0)1 58 33 50 58

E-mail: didier.veron@ipsen.com

Pierre Kemula

Vice President, Corporate Finance, Treasury and Financial Markets

Tel.: +33 (0)1 58 33 60 08

Fax: +33 (0)1 58 33 50 63

E-mail: pierre.kemula@ipsen.com

About Syntaxin

Syntaxin is a UK-based private life sciences company pioneering the discovery and development of a new class of compounds to treat diseases in a range of therapeutic areas, through its expertise in the field of botulinum toxin biology. The Company has developed a differentiated expertise in the design, recombinant expression and purification of botulinum toxins and Targeted Secretion Inhibitors (TSIs). Beyond its focus on improving and expanding the use of current therapies, Syntaxin aims at discovering new treatments through the modification and retargeting of botulinum toxins.

Syntaxin has established a wealth of experience in botulinum biology supported by an extensive patent portfolio, with 75 granted patents and over 130 patents pending covering the platform and products. The company owns dominant patents and know-how in the design, manufacture and use of novel cellular TSIs that are based on engineered botulinum toxins. Syntaxin’s Board, chaired by Dr Russell Greig, together with the Executive Management Team led by CEO Dr Melanie Lee, provides a wealth of pharmaceutical industry experience and is backed by a strong investor base including: Abingworth, SR One, LSP, JJDC, Lundbeckfond Ventures, Seventure, Quest, Sutepra SAS. For more information on Syntaxin, visit www.syntaxin.com.

Help employers find you! Check out all the jobs and post your resume.

Back to news