Otsuka Pharmaceutical to Acquire Visterra

Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Otsuka) and Visterra, Inc. (Visterra)
announce that they have entered into a definitive merger agreement
pursuant to which Otsuka will acquire Visterra for approximately USD 430
million in an all-cash transaction. The Otsuka and Visterra boards of
directors have approved the transaction. Subject to customary closing
conditions, including expiration or termination of the waiting period
under U.S. antitrust laws, the transaction is expected to close in the
third quarter of 2018.

Visterra’s Hierotope platform, comprised of novel computational and
experimental technologies, enables the design and engineering of
precision antibody-based therapies that specifically bind to, and
modulate, disease targets that are not adequately addressed by current
technologies in antibody therapeutics. Visterra’s
pipeline includes programs targeting IgA nephropathy and other
kidney diseases, cancer, chronic pain and infectious diseases.

research areas are in psychiatric and neurological diseases,
hematological cancers, and kidney, cardiovascular, and infectious
diseases. The company is placing emphasis on proprietary drug discovery
and development platforms, including antibody development platforms, as
a means to increase the efficiency of drug discovery across its programs
and as an addition to conventional R&D processes.

Tatsuo Higuchi, president and representative director of Otsuka
Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. commented, “I am highly gratified that
Visterra’s exceptional antibody platform technology, promising pipeline
and talented researchers will join up with Otsuka. By collaborating and
reinforcing each other’s culture, human ingenuity and technology, we
hope to help fulfill Visterra’s promise as a powerful new drug creation
engine and expand Otsuka’s research horizons.”

“This transaction affirms the power of Visterra’s novel technology
platform, the promise of our product candidates, and the value our
employees and shareholders have created. Our two companies share a
common culture of creativity and innovation, and commitment to patients
with kidney diseases, cancer and other hard-to-treat diseases. Joining
forces with Otsuka will provide Visterra the resources, support and
commitment to accelerate development of our pipeline and fully realize
the potential of our technology platform,” said Brian J. G. Pereira, MD,
CEO of Visterra.

The extensive overlap in disease areas prioritized by both companies
reflects a shared, deeper commitment to tackle the most difficult
treatment challenges through innovative approaches.

Following completion of the acquisition, Visterra will be a wholly owned
subsidiary of Otsuka America, Inc., which is a U.S. holding company and
a wholly owned subsidiary of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. of Japan.
Visterra will continue to operate its business and develop its pipeline
as a member of the Otsuka family of companies, retaining its talent and
its location in Waltham, Massachusetts.

About Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.Otsuka Pharmaceutical
is a global healthcare company with the corporate philosophy:
“Otsuka-people creating new products for better health worldwide.”
Otsuka researches, develops, manufactures and markets innovative
products, with a focus on pharmaceutical products for the treatment of
diseases and nutraceutical products for the maintenance of everyday

In pharmaceuticals, Otsuka is a leader in the challenging area of mental
health and also has research programs in several under-addressed
diseases including tuberculosis, a significant global public health
issue. These commitments illustrate how Otsuka is a “big venture”
company at heart, applying a youthful spirit of creativity in everything
it does.

Otsuka Pharmaceutical is a subsidiary of Otsuka Holdings Co., Ltd.
headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. The Otsuka group of companies employed
46,000 people worldwide and had consolidated sales of approximately USD
11.1 billion in 2017.

All Otsuka stories start by taking the road less travelled. Learn more
about Otsuka Pharmaceutical Company on its global website at
Learn more about Otsuka in the U.S. at
and connect with us on Twitter at @OtsukaUS.

About Visterra, Inc.Visterra is a clinical stage
biotechnology company committed to developing innovative antibody-based
therapies for the treatment of patients with kidney diseases and other
hard-to-treat diseases. Its proprietary Hierotope® platform enables the
design and engineering of precision antibody-based product candidates
that specifically bind to, and modulate, key disease targets that are
not adequately addressed by traditional therapeutic approaches. The
platform also includes Fc engineering capabilities for half-life
extension, bispecific antibodies and antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs).
Visterra’s pipeline includes programs targeting IgA nephropathy and
other kidney diseases, cancer, chronic pain and infectious diseases.
Visterra is funded by investments by Polaris Partners, Flagship
Pioneering, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, MRL Ventures Fund,
Vertex Ventures HC, Serum Institute of India Private Ltd., Temasek
Holdings, Omega Funds, Cycad Group, Lux Capital, Alleghany Financial
Group Ventures, CTI Life Sciences Fund and Alexandria Equities. For more
information, visit

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