Shire Buys Foresight Biotherapeutics

Dublin-based Shire announced its all-cash purchase of privately held Foresight Biotherapeutics, expanding the pharmaceutical company’s ability to develop medicine against viral and bacterial forms of conjunctivitis.

UK-listed Shire has been increasing its investment in eyecare while also pushing for approval from regulators for its own treatment for dry-eye disease, lifitegrast.

“Ophthalmics is a highly attractive growth area for Shire and this acquisition allows us to strengthen our presence,” said Flemming Ornskov, Shire chief executive.

Foresight’s drug, known as FST-100 is a perfect companion medicine to lifitegrast for a pharmaceutical company. If both obtain approval for use then together they will “address two of the leading reasons people seek eyecare treatment,” Mr Ornskov said.

Last year Shire created a dedicated opthalmics division, separate from its main business selling treatments for rare diseases and attention deficit Hyperactivity disorder.

Shire purchased Foresight for $300 million as it’s stock is trading at near-record prices of £57.30, considerably more than the £52.48 per share that AbbVie of the US tried to pay last year in its takeover bid, which eventually fell through.

Jonathon Bowes

About Jonathon Bowes

Jonathan Bowes started his career in banking. After a few years, he took courses in business and finance and worked his way up the corporate ladder. Today, while writing part-time for Business District, Bowes assists talented people to find jobs in the field of economics. Contact Bowes at Jonathon[at]businessdistrict.com