Evonik to Acquire Durect’s Lactel Polymers

18.12.2020 - Evonik has entered into an agreement to buy the Lactel absorbable polymer business from Durect Corp., a US-based biopharmaceutical company focused on developing drugs for pain and chronic diseases.

Under the terms of the deal, Evonik will pay Durect $15 million in exchange for certain assets and liabilities associated with the Lactel product line based in Birmingham, Alabama, plus an additional potential payment based on full year EBITDAS results.

“The acquisition of the Lactel business will strengthen both our innovation growth field Healthcare Solutions and Evonik's position as a globally leading CDMO for drug delivery solutions,” said Johann-Caspar Gammelin, head of Evonik’s Nutrition & Care Division. “The Lactel business will benefit from fast-growing markets such as advanced drug delivery, biomaterials for tissue engineering, and the 3D printing of implantable medical devices.”

“This deal makes strategic sense for Durect as we continue to focus on epigenetic regulation and the development of DUR-928 for alcohol-associated hepatitis and other acute organ injury and chronic liver diseases,” added Durect’s president and CEO James Brown.

The transaction is expected to close by Q1 2021, pending the satisfaction of certain customary closing conditions. An offer will be extended to each of the 15 Durect employees at the Birmingham site, which are associated with the Lactel business, to transition to Evonik.

Lactel polymers, based on lactide, glycolide and caprolactone, are widely used as a functional excipient to control the release of parenteral drug products. They are also used to control the biodegradation of implantable medical devices across various orthopedic, cardiovascular, would healing and other applications.

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist