New Rhein Healthcare Investors has agreed to sell its 60 percent stake in Softhale to Sino Biopharmaceutical Limited for an upfront payment of $110 million plus a profit share. The total value of the deal could exceed $200 million. Based in Belgium, Softhale is a developer of soft mist inhalation devices to improve respiratory treatments.
PHILADELPHIA and BRUSSELS, March 23, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — New Rhein Healthcare Investors announced that it has agreed to sell its 60% stake in Softhale NV to Sino Biopharmaceutical Limited for USD 110 million upfront payment plus a profit share. The total deal value could exceed USD 200 million subject to Softhale’s business development. The sale of Softhale marks the first exit from New Rhein’s latest fund, which was launched in 2018.
Headquartered in Belgium, Softhale has developed a new generation of Soft Mist Inhalation (SMI) devices to improve respiratory treatments. The company delivers proven drugs through its proprietary SMI device designed to deliver medication to the lungs more effectively than other types of inhalers. The WHO estimates that 235 million people suffer from asthma, and four million die prematurely from chronic respiratory disease every year. Softhale’s products offer the potential to substantially improve the treatment paradigm for asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (“COPD”) globally.
Greg Parekh, Founder and Managing Partner of New Rhein, said: “During the past two years, Softhale has made significant progress in developing its platform and achieved important regulatory milestones. The sale of Softhale represents another strong result for our investors and demonstrates New Rhein’s continued ability to choose the right opportunities and build value in the companies we back. We have been very deliberate in ensuring we find the right partner to continue the successful trajectory of Softhale, with the well-being of patients at heart. I believe Sino Biopharm is a good home for the business and will be committed to Softhale’s mission of developing innovative technologies to treat multiple respiratory conditions to help millions of patients globally.”
New Rhein takes significant or majority equity positions in life science venture capital companies with the aim to use that influence to create value for patients and its investors. Its investment focus lies on proven assets used in new ways. New Rhein held a 60% stake in Softhale at closing, having made its main investments in 2019 and 2020. The other main investor, PM Equity Partner, sold its 25% stake to Sino Biopharm as well.
Alexander Stoeckel, Head of PM Equity Partner, said: “We are proud supporters of Softhale’s outstanding team and think this is a well-deserved success for their tremendous efforts.”
Dr. Jan-Torsten Tews, CEO of Softhale, said: “New Rhein has played a fundamental role in transforming Softhale from its medical technology driven origins into a highly specialized developer of respiratory medicines and in accelerating the development of our pipeline with operational expertise, resources and a global network. At this crucial point of our development, Sino Biopharm is a great partner on our mission to further advance and broaden the development of our platform and to build and launch a new generation of highly effective inhalable medicines on a global scale.”
Theresa Tse, Executive Director and Chairwoman of Sino Biopharm, said: “Softhale is an excellent fit with our ambition to become a global leader in treating respiratory diseases, which become an ever more pressing medical concern globally and in China in particular. We are committed to support the Softhale team in further developing its innovative platform.”
The transaction was signed today. Closing is expected within March 2021. Guggenheim Securities acted as financial advisor to Softhale.
About New Rhein Healthcare Investors
New Rhein applies a private equity business model to life sciences venture capital investing, focusing on proven assets used in new ways (i.e. new delivery forms, new indications) that offer compelling health economic value to payors. New Rhein combines significant deal-making expertise with deep operating experience, it takes significant stakes in a small number of companies and actively manages their value creation. In this way, New Rhein limits science-based risk and concentrates on development and execution. Prior investments have included medicines or medical devices for Alzheimer’s disease, ophthalmic disorders, respiratory disease, critical care, urology and oncology. Our managing partners and advisors are former senior executives of leading pharmaceutical firms with outstanding operational and investment track records. For more information, see www.newrhein.com.
Softhale is a privately held Belgium based respiratory company focused on the development of pharmaceutical products with superior clinical performance based upon differentiated technology delivered by our next generation Soft Mist Inhalation (SMI) device to the lungs. The Company’s proprietary, propellant-free, purely mechanical device delivers medication to the lungs more effectively than other types of inhalers and is poised to change the treatment paradigm in large markets including asthma and COPD. Softhale’s products to be used for pharmaceutical development and approval processes are innovative as well as cost-optimized. For more information, see www.softhale.com.
About Sino Biopharm
Sino Biopharmaceutical Limited and its subsidiaries are the leading innovative research and R&D-driven pharmaceutical group in China, with a business scope that covers the full industry chain of pharmaceutical R&D platforms, intelligent production and strong sales systems. Its product offerings include a variety of biological drugs and chemical drugs, and it occupies an advantageous position in many potential therapeutic fields such as liver disease, tumors, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases, orthopaedics, digestive system, immune and respiratory diseases. For more information, see www.sinobiopharm.com.