The Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) grade cell therapy manufacturing capability of Celyad Oncology, including the current facility and all related personnel, will be acquired by Cellistic, the cell therapy development and manufacturing business of Ncardia BV. Celyad Oncology is a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the discovery and development of chimeric antigen receptor T cell (CAR T) therapies for cancer.
In accordance with the provisions of an asset purchase agreement, Cellistic and Celyad Oncology agreed that Celyad Oncology’s Manufacturing Business Unit in Mont-Saint-Guibert, Belgium, would be purchased by Cellistic for a sum of €6 million. The skilled manufacturing group from Celyad Oncology will join Cellistic. It is expected that the transaction, which is still subject to a number of usual conditions, would close in the fourth quarter of this year.
“We at Cellistic are incredibly excited to welcome this uniquely talented team into our organization”, “We’re bringing aboard a group of people whose passion and capabilities align incredibly well with our vision for the future of cell therapy. As a joined force, we have the talent and resources to further accelerate work on our proprietary platforms and the capability to enable Cellistic’s partners to bring iPSC-based allogeneic cell therapies to patients faster.”
Stefan Braam, founder and CEO of Cellistic
“We have focused our efforts on an allogeneic approach for the past few years and our manufacturing facility and staff has been a key element to enable many of our past trials, but has been underutilized in recent years as we mainly used the facility for our autologous candidates. Our current allogeneic programs are better suited for outsourced manufacturing. Through existing materials manufactured at Celyad, we have ensured the means to continue our clinical programs with cryopreserved cells until 2024. Based on this strategy, we are confident that this decision to transfer our manufacturing facility and the staff to Cellistic, who is the perfect company for such an agreement and will allow us to further execute on our business goals in the future.”
Michel Lussier, co-founder and interim CEO of Celyad Oncology
The newly acquired 11,000 square foot facility, which will be optimised for Cellistic’s iPSC-based allogeneic cell therapy platforms and processes to create the first purpose-built facility in the world to support customers from cell reprogramming and master cell banking through clinical trial material manufacturing, will receive a significant financial investment from the company. As part of this deal, Cellistic will have access to a group of more than 30 manufacturing, quality, and related employees from Celyad Oncology, all of whom have extensive backgrounds in the production of cell therapies and immune-oncology.
In the fourth quarter of this year, Celyad Oncology will offer additional guidance on the Company’s future business strategy.