Posted on January 15th, 2014
by Daniel O'Connor
As a former officer in the Marines, my interest in Advaxis’ platform technology and its development is aggressive, protective, and strategic. We believe our platform is poised to exponentially increase in value because it incorporates the essentials of cancer immunotherapy to illuminate tumor cells of interest, override their defenses, and combat the cancer on its home turf. The strength of this approach and its proven ability to fight cancer in the clinic makes management’s agility and careful approach vital not just for our business, but for the global fight against the emperor of all maladies.
I am looking forward to sharing insights about the Company with the investment community using this CEO Blog. The Company will continue to issue regular press releases to uniformly update our stakeholders on material developments, but I intend for this blog to supplement those activities by providing additional commentary and an informal context to discuss business updates and industry news. My goal is to keep the investment community aware of our progress as we continue to focus on the development of our unique immunotherapy to combat human papillomavirus (HPV)-associated cancers. New treatments for HPV-associated cancers are truly an unmet medical need. With our lead product, ADXS-HPV, poised to enter registration trials this year in women with recurrent cervical cancer, I want our audience to be as informed and excited as the Advaxis team is.
For my first blog, I’d like to use this opportunity to discuss one of our core business principles: developing meaningful partnerships to create long-term value for the Company.
The marshaling of resources, both monetary and manpower, to bring any investigational drug from development through commercialization is a challenge. Because of the versatility of our technology to treat so many different cancers, our immunotherapies have the potential to reach the millions of people who need better treatment options worldwide. To accomplish our goal of making this type of impact, we will need to forge meaningful and strategic partnerships that will aggressively advance our immunotherapies into the biggest markets, protect our rights to the science, and benefit the strategic mission of Advaxis.
We recently forged our first strategic partner by entering into an agreement for the development and commercialization of ADXS-HPV in Asia. This agreement is with Global Biopharma, a Taiwanese-based biotech company formed and funded by Taiwan Biotech Co. (TBC), one of the top five pharmaceutical companies in Taiwan. TBC has shown their dedication in this area by forming GBP to focus solely on the development and commercialization of ADXS-HPV for the treatment of HPV-associated cancers. I have confidence in the GBP management team and their extensive experience in research, clinical trials, CMC, manufacturing, and business development.
We are excited to have such a strong partner and believe that GBP believes in our technology as they have “skin in the game” by purchasing our common stock at market with an option to purchase additional shares of Advaxis stock at a 150% premium to the stock price on the effective date of the agreement. Not only will we receive event-based financial milestones, an annual development fee, and annual net sales royalty payments in the high single to double-digits, but GBP will conduct registrational trials for cervical cancer and contribute 150 patients to the U.S. and Asia registrational trials. Having a partner to share the cost of registrational trials is a huge benefit for Advaxis and our shareholders. We will continue to seek additional partners, like GBP, that are aligned with our clinical and commercialization objectives.
I thank you for reading this blog and look forward to sharing updates with the Advaxis community. The Company will also be utilizing our new official social communications channels as a means to connect with stakeholders. You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.
Forward Looking Statements
This blog may contain forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to: statements as to the anticipated timing of clinical studies and other business developments, statements as to the development of new constructs, expectations as to the adequacy of our cash balances to support our operations for specified periods of time and as to the nature and level of cash expenditures, expectations as to market opportunities, our ability to take advantage of those opportunities, and the risk factors set forth from time to time in Advaxis' SEC filings, including but not limited to its report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2012, which is available at www.sec.gov. The Company undertakes no obligation to revise these forward-looking statements which may be made to reflect the events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, except as required by law. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements.