ZS Pharma Announces New Employment Inducement Grants

SAN MATEO, Calif., Dec. 9, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ZS Pharma, Inc. (Nasdaq:SPH), today announced that on December 7, 2015 the compensation committee of its board of directors granted stock options to acquire an aggregate of 13,270 shares of its common stock and an aggregate of 3,740 restricted stock units which settle upon vesting in shares of its common stock to 11 newly hired employees who commenced employment in November. These grants of options and restricted stock units were made outside of, but subject to, ZS Pharma's 2014 Incentive Plan. All such options and restricted stock units were granted without shareholder approval in reliance upon the exception provided under NASDAQ Listing Rule 5635(c)(4) relating to awards granted as an inducement for employees to enter into employment. These grants were made in accordance with the terms of ZS Pharma's standard option agreement or restricted stock unit agreement, as applicable. The standard option agreement provides that 25% of the options subject thereto will vest on the first anniversary of the grant date, with the remaining options vesting in equal monthly installments over the following three years, subject to continued employment on each such vesting date. The standard restricted stock unit agreement provides that 25% of the restricted stock units granted thereunder will vest on each of the first through fourth anniversaries of the grant date, subject to continued employment on each such vesting date. Each agreement provides for accelerated vesting of unvested awards if the holder thereof is terminated without cause or quits for good reason during the twelve-month period following a change in control of ZS Pharma.

About ZS Pharma

ZS Pharma is a publicly-traded (Nasdaq:ZSPH), biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of highly selective, non-absorbed drugs to treat renal, cardiovascular, liver and metabolic disorders. ZS Pharma's lead therapeutic candidate, ZS-9 (sodium zirconium cyclosilicate), is an investigational agent that has been submitted to the FDA for potential approval for the treatment of hyperkalemia. The ZS-9 Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) goal date for a decision by the FDA is May 26, 2016. ZS Pharma is also pursuing the discovery of additional drug candidates that utilize its novel selective ion-trap technology. Additional information about ZS Pharma is available at www.zspharma.com.

CONTACT: ZS Pharma Contacts Myesha Edwards (Investors) ZS Pharma 650.753.1854 medwards@zspharma.com Denise Powell (Media) Red House Consulting 510.703.9491 denise@redhousecomms.com

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