Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Marion E. Glick
ABGENIX TO BECOME SOLE OWNER OF XENOMOUSE FULLY HUMAN ANTIBODY TECHNOLOGY
-Abgenix to Acquire Japan Tobacco's Interests in Xenotech Joint Venture -
FREMONT, CALIFORNIA - December 20, 1999 - Abgenix, Inc. (Nasdaq: ABGX) will become the sole owner of the XenoMouse, a leading technology for generating fully human antibody drugs useful in treating a wide range of diseases, by acquiring all of the interest in the technology owned by JT America Inc. (JT America). Under the agreements signed today, Abgenix will pay $47 million to JT America for its 50 percent interest in Xenotech, Inc., and Xenotech, L.P., (Xenotech), an equally owned limited partnership between the two companies that created the XenoMouse. Abgenix will also pay $10 million as compensation to Japan Tobacco, Inc. (JT) to relinquish certain option and license rights it is currently entitled to. The acquisition, expected to close by year-end, is contingent upon approval under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976.
"Abgenix's acquisition of Japan Tobacco's share of the Xenotech partnership reflects our profound enthusiasm for the commercial potential of the XenoMouse technology," stated R. Scott Greer, president and CEO of Abgenix. "With sole ownership of this industry-leading technology, we will capture 100 percent of the value of the XenoMouse technology deals executed to date as well as remove limits on the number and form of deals Abgenix can do in the future. For example, our recently completed multi-product alliances with two leading genomics companies, Human Genome Sciences and CuraGen, will be facilitated by this transaction."
Under the arrangement, JT will have a research license to use XenoMouse technology and options to license the technology for a small number of antigen targets each year. Abgenix also will
Contact: Kurt Leutzinger, Abgenix, Inc.