Evotec has entered a definitive agreement for the acquisition of 100% of the capital of Italy-based cell technology firm Rigenerand for $24.7m (€23m).

Founded as a spin-off of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in 2009, Rigenerand focuses on the cGMP manufacturing of cell therapies.

The company runs a certified production facility that merges cGMP manufacturing with research and development (R&D) and QC labs, as well as development labs.

Called ‘cell factory’, the plant consists of a series of fully equipped clean rooms to produce complex cell-based therapies.

Situated in Medolla, Italy, the site comprises 1,200m² of high-tech production space, which can be further expanded.

Through the acquisition, Evotec will add a team of cell therapy cGMP manufacturing experts.

The deal will add the cell therapy platform of Evotec, EVOcells, to a cGMP manufacturing site.

The merging of discovery and development of new cures, along with in-house expertise in GMP production, is required within this field.

Even though the revenue contribution might not be substantial in the initial stage, the production expertise of Rigenerand, together with Evotec’s R&D capability, will improve the latter’s ability to enter new, integrated collaborations within the cell therapy field.

Evotec CEO Dr Werner Lanthaler said: “Cell therapies are an exciting emerging therapeutic modality, with broad applicability across many indications.

“Originating from our leading iPSC platform, Evotec’s EVOcells platform enables the delivery of innovative cell therapeutics from inception to the patient.

“The acquisition of Rigenerand adds manufacturing capacity and expertise to the EVOcells platform.”

The company developed EVOcells as an integrated, versatile platform to discover, develop and, produce cell therapies.

EVOcells project portfolio of Evotec includes immuno-oncology, metabolic diseases, heart repair, and exosome-based therapies.

The latest development comes after Evotec and Sernova entered an exclusive worldwide strategic partnership to develop cell therapy for insulin-dependent diabetes.

Cell & Gene Therapy coverage on Pharmaceutical Technology is supported by Cytiva.

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