Organon to acquire Finnish pharmaceutical company with new treatment for endometriosis in its pipeline

Global healthcare company – and Merck spin off – Organon will acquire the Finland-based company Forendo Pharma, according to a joint announcement on Thursday.

The transaction includes an upfront payment of $ 75 million, assumption of approximately $ 9 million of Forendo debt, payments upon achievement of certain development and regulatory milestones of up to $ 270 million, and payments of $ 270 million. ‘trade milestones up to $ 600 million, which together could add up to the total consideration of $ 954 million.
The deal is expected to be finalized in December 2021.

Forendo is a pioneer in the science of intracrinology, tackling disease with a new tissue-specific approach. Its main clinical compound is a potentially first-in-class experimental inhibitor of oral 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1, or HSD17B1, in early clinical development for endometriosis, under evaluation for its potential effect on endometriosis lesions.

Endometriosis is a common, chronic disease that affects up to 1 in 10 women of childbearing age, causes abdominal pain and is associated with infertility.

“Organon is dedicated to delivering important medical interventions to women in healthcare, prioritizing disease areas based on their unmet needs. Endometriosis is one of our priority areas of intervention, ”said Kevin Ali, CEO of Organon. “Our acquisition of Forendo once again demonstrates our commitment to creating a pipeline of impactful treatment options for women with unmet medical needs. “

Forendo’s pipeline also includes a preclinical program targeting polycystic ovary syndrome, one of the most common health problems in women, often associated with metabolic disorders, hyperandrogenism and infertility.

Risto Lammintausta, CEO of Forendo, underlined the importance of the transaction: “This is an excellent opportunity for Forendo to join forces with a larger organization capable of accelerating the development of our innovative product candidates through in intermediate and advanced stage trials and, once approved, make the resulting drugs available to patients with endometriosis and PCOS worldwide. Based on preclinical data, we believe that our new therapeutic mechanisms hold promise in therapeutic areas where patients currently have limited options.

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