Starpharma sells agrochemicals business

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Adelaide-based Starpharma (ASX:SPL) has sold its agrochemicals and Priostar business to US company Agrium for $35 million.

Starpharma said the sale proceeds have strengthened its balance sheet and will allow the company to focus resources on its core pharmaceutical development portfolios.

The company currently has a collaboration with AstraZeneca involving the use of its DEP drug delivery technology in the development of multiple therapies.

The sale proceeds mean its cash balance will exceed $60 million at the end of June.

Starpharma Agrochemicals is comprised of patents and a small number of staff dedicated solely to Priostar dendrimers and agrochemicals operations. This business is independent of Starpharma’s DEP and VivaGel products and related intellectual property portfolios.

Commenting on the transaction, Starpharma CEO Dr Jackie Fairley, said, “The sale of Starpharma Agrochemicals is an exciting milestone for the company and the culmination of our strategy to maximise the value of the Priostar technology. We achieved this outcome through the development of a range of value-added formulations utilising Priostar to a stage where those products had high attraction value as differentiated products for a market-facing third party such as Agrium. It’s a very pleasing outcome, Agrium is an ideal buyer to realise the full potential of Priostar.

“The proceeds from the sale of Starpharma Agrochemicals places Starpharma in an excellent financial position to expand and accelerate the development of its internal DEP programs, and increase shareholder value through its pharmaceutical portfolio.”