Amgen takes next step with its China ambitions, out-licensing drugs to Fosun Pharma
In a bid to increase its market share in China, Amgen has agreed to a partnership with a Shanghai biotech — a collaboration and out-licensing agreement for two of its drugs.
Amgen and Fosun Pharma announced a deal Monday in a bid to increase Amgen’s presence in the country. The stated goal so far is to commercialize Amgen’s blockbuster psoriasis drug Otezla alongside Parsabiv, a drug for secondary hyperparathyroidism in adults with chronic kidney disease and on a specific type of dialysis.
This is Amgen’s most recent step in the country in a bid that goes back years. In 2019, Amgen spent $2.7 billion to grab a 20.5% stake in Beijing-headquartered BeiGene, expressing an initial desire to tap into the world’s most populous country and one of the biggest markets on the world stage.
Fosun and Amgen said that their collaboration will focus on bringing the two medicines to Chinese patients more quickly and utilize Fosun’s already-established commercial capabilities in the country. But on the approval front, Amgen is only halfway there.
While Otezla has already been approved by China’s National Medical Products Administration as of last August, Parsabiv is still awaiting marketing authorization in the country. Parsabiv has already gotten the thumbs up from both the EMA and FDA in 2016 and 2017, respectively.
Amgen did not respond to a request for comment before publication.
Fosun chairman Wu Yifang said in a statement, “We are very pleased to enter into this partnership with Amgen to bring two innovative medicines, Otezla and Parsabiv, to Chinese patients.”
Amgen China’s general manager Irene Hsu added that out-licensing the two medicines “can give full play to both companies’ advantages” to ensure patient access and allow Amgen to focus on cardiovascular disease and bone health in the country.
According to the two companies, China has 6.5 million patients with psoriasis and about 735,000 patients on dialysis.
Financial details and other specifics about out-licensing and the duration of the deal were not disclosed.