PARIS — Sanofi on Monday acquired the rights to Afrezza Inhalation Powder, a new rapid-acting inhaled insulin therapy for adults with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, from MannKind in a deal that could be worth as much as $925 million.
The companies plan to launch Afrezza in the United States in the first quarter of 2015.
Under the collaboration and license agreement, Sanofi will be responsible for global commercial, regulatory and development activities. Under a separate supply agreement, MannKind will manufacture Afrezza at its manufacturing facility in Danbury, Conn. In addition, the companies are planning to collaborate to expand manufacturing capacity to meet global demand as necessary.
"Afrezza is a further addition to our growing portfolio of integrated diabetes solutions. It is uniquely positioned to provide patients with another insulin therapy option to manage their diabetes but does not require multiple daily injections.”Under the terms of the agreement, MannKind Corporation will receive an up-front payment of $150 million and potential milestone payments of up to $775 million. The milestone payments are dependent upon specific regulatory and development targets, as well as sales thresholds.
Sanofi and MannKind will share profits and losses on a global basis, with Sanofi retaining 65% and MannKind receiving 35%. Sanofi has agreed to advance to MannKind its share of the collaboration's expenses up to a limit of $175 million.
"Afrezza is an innovative drug-device combination product consisting of a dry formulation of human insulin delivered through a small, discreet inhaler," said Pierre Chancel, SVP of Sanofi's diabetes division. "Afrezza is a further addition to our growing portfolio of integrated diabetes solutions. It is uniquely positioned to provide patients with another insulin therapy option to manage their diabetes but does not require multiple daily injections."
The closing of the transaction is subject to customary Hart-Scott-Rodino approval and completion of financing documentation.
Greenhill & Co. served as exclusive financial advisor to MannKind with respect to this transaction.