Biotech company Amgen and pharma company Watson Pharmaceuticals are collaborating to develop and commercialise a number of biosimilar antibody-based products in the oncology field.
Amgen will develop the products with funding and expert support from Watson, who will also manage their commercialisation.
The products developed through the collaboration will be sold under a joint Amgen/Watson label.
Founded in 1980, Amgen was one of the first biotech companies to take new therapies all the way from the laboratory to the patient. Watson is an integrated global specialty pharmaceutical company focused on urology and women’s health.
According to the two US companies, the collaboration demonstrates that biosimilars are distinct from generics, requiring more infrastructure and expertise for their development.
Under the terms of the agreement, Amgen will take primary responsibility for developing, manufacturing and launching the biosimilars. Watson will contribute up to $400 million in co-development costs, providing development support and sharing risks.
Watson will also manage the commercial life cycle of the biosimilars, and will receive royalties from product revenues and sales milestones.
“The pairing of Amgen's 30 years of experience in biologics together with Watson’s substantial generics and specialty pharmaceutical experience and complementary commercial and distribution capabilities provides great potential for worldwide patient access to high-quality oncology biosimilar medicines," said Amgen President Robert A. Bradway.
Paul Bisaro, Watson’s President, commented: “This collaboration places Amgen and Watson in an unparalleled position in the global biosimilars market by capitalising on best-in-class capabilities in both innovative biologics and specialty pharmaceuticals and generics.
“We believe that biosimilars are the next frontier in the evolution of the healthcare market, and we are prepared to bring all of our resources to bear in this collaboration to ensure this partnership can most effectively compete in the biosimilar space.”