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Baker McKenzie advised Hitachi Chemical Company, Ltd., a leading manufacturer of functional materials and advanced components with a strong portfolio in the life sciences industry, on the take over of German apceth Biopharma, a contract development & manufacturing organization for complex cell-based regenerative gene therapy products, based in Munich and Ottobrunn.

The definitive transaction agreement to acquire the contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) business of apceth Biopharma, headquartered in the life sciences hub Bavaria, was signed with the seller, apceth GmbH & Co. KG, a company controlled by Santo Holding, a holding company of the family office of German biotech investor pioneers Andreas & Thomas Strüngmann.

The transaction is subject to the approval of the relevant authorities and is expected to close in April.

Baker McKenzie provided Hitachi Chemical with comprehensive legal advice on all aspects of the deal. The advice by Baker McKenzie included complex medicinal, regulatory and IT legal aspects given apceth Biopharma's CDMO activities using genetically engineered mesenchymal stem cells.

"As a result of the apceth Biopharma acquisition, our client Hitachi Chemical aims to further strengthen its position as innovative leader for regenerative medicine in the field of innovative cell therapeutics with a presence in Europe as second largest market for regenerative medicine after the US. We are excited and grateful for our involvement in the deal with a unique team of life sciences legal practitioners across the global footprint of the firm," comments Baker McKenzie corporate partner Berthold Hummel.

Hitachi Chemical Co., Ltd. (est. 1962), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, has a diversified portfolio ranging from electronic materials, to automobile parts, energy storage devices and systems, and medical products such as diagnostic reagents and regenerative medicine, and delivers its innovative products and services in global markets. Hitachi Chemical Co., Ltd. is a subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd.

apceth Biopharma is a well-established and highly experienced GMP contract development and manufacturing organization serving pharmaceutical manufacturers mainly in Europe and the United States through its manufacturing sites of regenerative medicine products based in Germany. The company has a strong track record of manufacturing various regenerative medicine products for investigation, including cancer immunotherapy cell, iPS cell, and mesenchymal stem cell.

Baker McKenzie's Corporate / M&A team regularly advises big pharma, financial investors and early stage biotech companies on domestic and international healthcare transactions. Most recently, Baker McKenzie advised Forbion as lead investor on a € 17 million Series C Equity Financing of Omeicos Therapeutics as well as on a USD 54 million Series A Equity Financing of Gotham Therapeutics Corporation, Mundipharma on the sale of its Limburg production, CureVac AG on a collaboration with Eli Lilly and Hillhouse Capital as co-investor in the € 50 million Series C cross-over financing of Hookipa Biotech.

Legal advisor to Hitachi Chemical Company, Ltd.:
Baker McKenzie

Lead: Berthold A. Hummel (Corporate/M&A, partner, Munich)
Akifusa Takada (Corporate/M&A, partner Tokyo),
German Team: Corporate/M&A: Dr. Jon Marcus Meese (partner, Munich), Dr. Katja Heuterkes (counsel, Munich), Julia Braun (counsel, Munich), Dr. Tino Marz (associate Munich), Dr. Julia Rossié (associate, Munich),
Pharma: Dr. Thilo Räpple (partner, Frankfurt), Dr. Frank Pflüger (partner, Frankfurt), Dr. Martin Altschwager (senior associate, Frankfurt), Dr. Dorothea Radtke (associate, Frankfurt)
Intellectual Property: Dr. Michel A. Fammler (partner, Frankfurt), Dr. Markus Hecht (senior associate, Frankfurt)
Antitrust & Competition: Dr. Christian Burholt (partner, Berlin)
Real Estate: Dr. Florian Thamm (partner, Frankfurt), Dr. Niklas Wielandt (senior associate, Frankfurt),
Public Law: Anahita Thoms (partner, Düsseldorf), Dr. Janet Kerstin Butler (counsel, Berlin), Dr. Ilya Levin (associate, Berlin)
IT: Prof. Dr. Michael Schmidl (partner, Munich), Florian Tannen (senior associate, Munich), Dr. Sebastian Rogge (associate, Munich), Dr. Matthias Scheck (associate, Munich)
Commercial & Trade: Katharina Spenner (partner, Munich), Joachim Fröhlich (counsel, Frankfurt), Isabell Weaver (associate, Munich)
Employment: Katja Häferer (partner, Munich), Christian Schnurrer (associate, Munich)
Tax: Christoph Becker (partner, Frankfurt), Ariane Schaaf (associate, Frankfurt)
Tokyo Team: Aiko Yamada (counsel, Tokyo), Masao, Katsuyama (senior associate, Tokyo), Olivia Nomura (associate, Tokyo)

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