Canadian private equity firm DRI Capital has purchased royalties relating to the worldwide sales of the drug Ampyra from Chicago-based healthcare institution Rush University Medical Center. The price for acquiring the royalties was approximately US$42 million. Ampyra is a therapy intended to help improve walking for people with multiple sclerosis. It was approved for use in the United States in January 2010 and has received conditional approval in Europe. The royalty rights were bought by Drug Royalty III, the third partnership of the Toronto-based DRI Capital, which closed last September at US$1.45 billion.
Rush University Medical Center Sells AMPYRA® Royalty Rights to DRI Capital Managed Fund for Approximately $42 Million
TORONTO & CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE), August 12, 2014
DRI Capital Inc. (DRI) and Rush University Medical Center (Rush) announced today that Drug Royalty III, a private equity fund managed by DRI has purchased Rush’s royalties relating to worldwide sales of Ampyra® for approximately $42 million. Ampyra® (dalfampridine) extended release tablets, 10 mg, twice daily, were approved for use in the US in January 2010, and received conditional approval in Europe, where it is known as Fampyra®, in July 2011. Ampyra is marketed by Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. (Acorda), within the United States, and by Acorda’s licensee, Biogen IDEC, internationally.
Ampyra is the only FDA-approved therapy indicated to improve walking in people with multiple sclerosis; this was measured in clinical trials by an increase in walking speed. Walking disability is one of the most common and debilitating symptoms of the disease. While other multiple sclerosis drugs work by decreasing the inflammatory processes that cause damage to the central nervous system, Ampyra, a potassium channel blocker, was shown in preclinical studies to enhance message conduction in damaged nerve fibers.
Decades of pioneering research completed at Rush, followed by further development conducted by Rush’s licensing partner (Acorda), culminated in the approval of Ampyra to improve walking in patients with multiple sclerosis. “Rush is recognized for research aimed at applying discoveries generated in the laboratory and in preclinical studies to the development of new and better treatments for patients,” said Dr. Larry Goodman, Chief Executive Officer of Rush. “The proceeds from this transaction will advance Rush’s mission by allowing us to fund more of this kind of innovative research.”
“We are extremely pleased that our fund Drug Royalty III has acquired royalties associated with the sales of Ampyra which creates a meaningful difference in the lives of multiple sclerosis patients with a walking impairment,” said Craig Shepherd, a Managing Director with DRI. “DRI has been a global leader in working with academic pharmaceutical royalty recipients and this important deal with the team at Rush reinforces that. We are excited to see the proceeds of royalty monetization being reinvested by Rush to fund more innovative research.”
About DRI Capital
DRI is a pioneer and global leader in healthcare royalty investing and has completed transactions with large global pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, universities, research institutes, academic hospitals, and individual inventors located around the world. Founded in 1992 as Drug Royalty Corporation, DRI is the oldest and the largest healthcare royalty private equity fund manager in the world and has completed more transactions with academic royalty recipients than all other royalty investment firms combined. On September 9, 2013, DRI announced that it had raised U.S. $1.45B of equity commitments from a global pool of institutional investors for its third private equity fund, Drug Royalty III. This is the largest healthcare royalty private equity fund ever raised. This follows the successful raise in 2010 of U.S. $926 million of capital commitments for Drug Royalty II ($701M in equity for Drug Royalty II and $225M in equity for Drug Royalty II Co-Investment Fund), and the U.S. $800M raised in 2006 for Drug Royalty I ($240M in equity and $560M in debt). In 1993, Drug Royalty Corporation was listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and remained publicly traded until 2002, when it was purchased, taken private and converted in to a global private equity fund manager business model. As of August 1, 2014, Drug Royalty I, Drug Royalty II, and Drug Royalty III have collectively acquired over 50 separate international royalty streams from inventors, universities, research institutes, biotechnology, and global pharmaceutical companies located around the world, payable on over 30 different leading pharmaceutical products. Headquartered in Toronto, DRI is a fully-integrated team of 30 investment professionals with deep life sciences industry expertise drawn from a variety of disciplines. For more information on DRI, please visit www.dricapital.com or contact M. Craig Shepherd, Managing Director (email@example.com; 416.324.5716).
About Rush University Medical Center
Rush is a not-for-profit health care, education, and research enterprise comprising Rush University Medical Center, Rush University, Rush Oak Park Hospital, and Rush Health. Rush is consistently named one of the nation’s top hospitals, according to U.S. News & World Report, and is ranked in seven of 16 categories included in the magazine’s 2014-15 “America’s Best Hospitals” issue. Additionally, Rush is one of the two top-ranked hospitals in Illinois overall. The mission of Rush is to provide the best health care for the individuals and diverse communities we serve through the integration of outstanding patient care, education, research, and community partnerships. Located one mile west of Chicago’s Loop, Rush encompasses a 664-bed hospital serving adults and children. The 376-bed Tower building opened in 2012 as part of a major, ten-year campus redevelopment. Rush has more than 6,000 employees and faculty. Rush University, with more than 2,000 students, is the academic component of Rush. Rush University is a health sciences university offering more than 30 unique degree or certificate options in medicine, nursing, allied health, and biomedical research. Rush University is comprised of Rush Medical College, the College of Nursing, the College of Health Sciences, and the Graduate College. Rush University is distinct for its practitioner-teacher model, translational research, nurturing academic environment, and focus on community and global health. For more information on Rush, please visit www.rush.edu or contact John M. Pontarelli, Associate Vice President, Public Relations (firstname.lastname@example.org; 312.942.5949).
For DRI Capital Inc.
Paul Kidwell, 617-680-1088
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock