Open Orphan inks new contract with Carna Bioscience
Francesca Morgan
RNS Newswire
07:34, 4th August 2020

Open Orphan (ORPH) FOLLOW has inked a new contract with Carna Bioscience for a first-in-human clinical pharmacology trial, which is expected to deliver significant recurring revenue over the next year.

Under the contract, Venn Life Sciences, a subsidiary of Open Orphan, will provide Carna with a range of expertise such as PK/PD analysis, which relates drug effects to a measure of drug concentration, as well as other laboratory services related to early clinical development.

Venn’s Breda office in the Netherlands will work alongside Carna, a Japanese firm specialising in kinase biology, innovative cancer treatments and immune disorders.

This new contract builds upon several years of history between the two organisations where both parties collaborated closely on drug development planning and pre-clinical activities, Open Orphan noted.

In recent weeks, Venn's chemistry, manufacturing and control team (“CMC”), which is also based in Breda, have also won a contract extension to continue work for a Dutch biotech on until at least the end of the year.

These contract wins further demonstrate the rationale for acquiring Venn in 2019. ORPH has clearly empowered the heads of departments to deliver more contracts, such as those with Breda and Carna, to deliver increasing and repeatable revenue for the Group.

Shares in Open Orphan have traded strongly from lows of 4.6p seen at the beginning of the year to reach highs of 16.50p in the past three months. Shares opened up 4% to 13.25p in early trading following this announcement.

Cathal Friel, Executive Chairman of Open Orphan said the contracts validate Venn Life Sciences since its takeover by the company last June which was executed “to secure long-term partnership contracts which deliver recurring revenues for the business.”

“This new contract with Carna further extends our relationship and demonstrates our ability to successfully service clients, resulting in repeat business,” said Friel.

He added, “We look forward to carrying out this contract over the next year as we deliver on our strategy of generating recurring revenue through long term, service contracts."

Meanwhile, Friel added that there had been significant headcount reductions removing senior, non-fee earning executives such as the former CEO and COO since the acquisition last June.

He said this had “re-energised internal departments by providing autonomy to some long standing heads of departments who are doing an excellent job at delivering more contracts.”

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