Codexis, Inc. has announced the signing of a CodeEvolver® platform technology license agreement with Merck, known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, through a subsidiary. This transaction marks the second CodeEvolver licensing agreement between Codexis and a major pharmaceutical company and advances the technology's business model of multiple sources of revenue.
Under the terms of the agreement, Codexis has granted Merck a non-exclusive license to use Codexis' proprietary CodeEvolver protein engineering platform technology to develop novel enzymes for use in the manufacture of Merck's pharmaceutical products. Upon completion of the technology transfer, a Codexis' CodeEvolver protein engineering platform will be located at a Merck research site.
Codexis is eligible to receive up to $18 million over approximately the next 15 to 24 months, $5 million of which will be paid upon the signing of this agreement and an additional $13 million subject to the satisfactory completion of certain technology transfer milestones.
Codexis will also be eligible to receive payments of up to maximum of $15 million for each pharmaceutical ingredient (API) using novel enzymes developed by Merck using the CodeEvolver technology and used for commercial manufacturing purposes.
"This licensing transaction builds upon our productive eight-year relationship with Merck and further validates the ability of CodeEvolver to effectively and cost-efficiently improve certain manufacturing processes," stated John Nicols, President and CEO of Codexis. "We view licensing agreements involving our CodeEvolver technology such as this one with Merck as an attractive component of our business model. It allows us to monetize our core technology, while continuing to provide services and supply products to customers under our traditional business model."
"This technology transfer and licensing agreement builds upon our long standing collaboration in biocatalysis with Codexis," said Rich Tillyer, senior vice president, and head of Global Chemistry, Merck Research Laboratories. "Increased access to the CodeEvolver technology positions Merck to potentially expand upon the use of enzymes in its pharmaceutical manufacturing processes."