That $335M JV Bayer set up on CRISPR/Cas9? They’re letting the biotech partner carry on
Bayer committed $300 million to set up a joint venture on CRISPR/Cas9 tech with CRISPR Therapeutics $CRSP. But they’re handing off control now to the smaller biotech while retaining a couple of opt-ins for programs nearing an IND.
Bayer $BAY made much of the fact that they were going all-in on gene editing when they did their deal 3 years ago with CRISPR Therapeutics, which pitched $35 million in on their end. This was the cornerstone of their plan to set up new JVs that could make some serious leap forwards in hot new R&D spaces. Now CRISPR will have full management control of Casebia as they pursue programs in hemophilia, ophthalmology and autoimmune diseases.
Samarth Kulkarni, the CEO at CRISPR, made it sound like a natural progression.
As Casebia’s programs have advanced beyond the discovery stage, we are evolving the operating model to leverage the manufacturing and clinical expertise of CRISPR Therapeutics to further accelerate these programs.
And Kemal Malik, Bayer board member for innovation, says Bayer remains excited about the prospect of what’s ahead.
CRISPR’s shares surged 7.5% Monday morning.
Under the original plan, the JV planned to hire 80 staffers and house them in the heart of the Cambridge hub, with support work at the biotech as well as Bayer’s R&D centers in Europe and San Francisco. But it’s CRISPR’s show now.