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Freshfields advises Affimed on cooperation with Roivant Sciences

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer ("Freshfields") has advised Affimed N.V., a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company focusing on cancer treatment, on its planned and announced licensing and strategic collaboration agreement with Roivant Sciences, a global biopharmaceutical company. Both partners aim to develop and commercialize novel innate cell engagers (ICE®) molecules in oncology.
Through the collaboration, Roivant will receive a license to Affimed’s preclinical ICE® AFM32. Simultaneously, Affimed’s proprietary Redirected Optimized Cell Killing (ROCK®) platform will be leveraged to generate new ICE® molecules directed against targets not included in Affimed’s current pipeline. Affimed will receive 60 million US dollars in upfront consideration (40 million US dollars in cash and pre-paid R&D funding and 20 million US dollars of newly issued shares in Roivant). Affimed could receive further short-term proceeds in the form of option fees contingent on the commencement of additional programs contemplated under the agreement. In addition, Affimed is eligible to receive up to 2 billion US dollars over time upon achievement of certain milestones and tiered royalty payments on net sales of products developed under the collaboration.
Under the agreement, Affimed will primarily be responsible for the research and pre-clinical development of ICE® molecules. Roivant will be responsible for clinical development and worldwide commercialization of such products, subject to a co-promotion option for Affimed.
The Freshfields team has advised on all (legal) terms of the extensive collaboration agreement. It was led by Jochen Dieselhorst and comprised Lutz Drallé (both Corporate/IP), Alexander Schwahn and Jan Hobus (both Tax) as well as Bruce McCulloch and Ilana Kattan (Antitrust).