President's Corner, Uncategorized

Introducing the MoFo BioMeter: Morrison & Foerster’s Newsletter and Index Tracking Licensing Transactions Across the Life Sciences Industry

We’d like to share a new publishing venture, MoFo BioMeter, just launched by Morrison & Foerster. The quarterly deal report tracks licensing and other important revenue-producing transactions across the life sciences industry. Out of the box, the new publication reports some noteworthy trends regarding the size and objectives of recent transactions.

MoFo BioMeter charts up-front payments in the form of licensing, collaboration, and development agreements between biotech firms and companies that pay for commercialization rights. Analysis of more than 1,000 transactions between 2006 and 2011 revealed an average payment of $35.5 million for products across all stages of development.

In 2011 and the first quarter of 2012, the number of transactions for products with regulatory approval has increased relative to the number of transactions for products in Phase 3. The first quarter of 2012 also showed the highest percentage of deals for approved products, at 46 percent, and the lowest number of deals for pre-clinical or Phase 1 products. MoFo BioMeter concludes that licensees have become more interested in securing later-stage assets that will quickly produce revenue and have already weathered regulatory appraisal.

Data such as this is invaluable to our industry because it helps create a clearer picture of the licensing landscape, especially since the BioMeter breaks down findings by stage of company, from those engaged in pre-clinical work and discovery research to those working on Phase I, II and III clinical trials, as well as companies whose treatments and devices have been approved.

The newsletter also acknowledges the degree to which licensing, joint-venture and other transaction income has become critical to biotech firms working on as-yet unapproved products, now that venture funding has greatly contracted. The overall number of transactions involving pre-clinical assets fell drastically between 2007 and 2011—though their values have stayed constant. The life sciences attorneys at Morrison & Foerster believe that early-stage assets are still attractive to the right buyers, but that deals are harder to find in the current economic climate.

Stephen Thau, the editor of BioMeter and a respected life sciences attorney who is also a member of BayBio’s board, explains that the aim of the newsletter and its proprietary index is to provide a gauge for the state of deal-making in the life sciences industry. Morrison & Foerster’s deep knowledge and expertise is shown through the BioMeter and analysis of the potential impact of deals across our industry.

Published quarterly, MoFo BioMeter is researched and written by Morrison & Foerster attorneys from multiple practice specialties, including Life Sciences, Technology Transactions, Emerging Companies, and Cleantech, out of the firm’s offices in the U.S., Europe, Japan, and China. We are excited by its launch and believe it will come to be an important means of evaluating the deal making landscape for BayBio members.

Read the full report here.