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May 23rd, 2024 | 08:45 CEST

Defence Therapeutics, Super Micro Computer, Evotec: Fresh patents, revenue explosion, and cyberattacks - These companies overcome all hurdles

  • Biotechnology
  • Pharma
  • AI
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Medicine and research go hand in hand. The Canadian biotech company Defence Therapeutics is expanding its patent protection for its platform technology in order to further advance the development of drugs, vaccines, and active ingredients. Data collection and analysis require intelligent solutions such as those from Super Micro Computer. With an incredible 200% increase in revenue, the US company from Silicon Valley is surfing the digital wave of success. Will they continue to rise? Meanwhile, Evotec is grappling with the darker side of digitalization. Due to a cyberattack, the life sciences company is withdrawing from an otherwise lucrative segment. We provide the details.

time to read: 6 minutes | Author: Juliane Zielonka

Table of contents:

    David Elsley, CEO, Cardiol Therapeutics Inc.
    "[...] As a company dedicated to developing treatments for rare heart diseases, we see this as an opportune moment to contribute to the fight against heart disease and make meaningful strides in improving heart health worldwide. [...]" David Elsley, CEO, Cardiol Therapeutics Inc.

    Full interview


    Fight against cancer: Defence Therapeutics strengthens and expands global patent protection

    The wind has changed, and for big pharma companies like Bayer, the signs are pointing to a storm: numerous patents held by the major corporation are expiring this year and in the coming years. This means further revenue losses for the big player from Leverkusen.

    However, it is good for those who can secure further patents in these turbulent times. The Canadian company Defence Therapeutics is one of the biotech companies that register new patents in order to secure relevant market power in its segment. Defence Therapeutics develops innovative immuno-oncology vaccines and drug delivery technologies. Its specialty in drug research is oncology. The Company focuses on cancer drugs that strengthen the body's own immune system to eliminate harmful cancer cells on its own. Defence's already patented platform technology is now even better protected by two additional brand-new approvals from the US Patent and Trademark Office. The patents comprehensively cover Defence's ARM™ vaccine platform for fighting cancer.

    Preclinical studies show that Defence's ARM-002™ vaccine, in combination with anti-PD-1 immune checkpoint inhibitor, induces effective antitumor responses in melanoma, lymphoma and pancreatic cancer models, paving the way for Phase I clinical trials. With 21.5 new cases per 100,000 population annually, malignant melanoma is one of the most common cancers. This skin cancer accounts for around 5% of all cancers worldwide. Lymphomas belong to the genus of blood cancers and are among the five to nine most common cancers in most countries worldwide. In 2020, an estimated 544,000 new lymphoma cancer cases and 260,000 cancer deaths were recorded. In 2020, around 500,000 new cases of pancreatic cancer and 470,000 deaths from this disease were recorded worldwide. The demand for drugs such as those from Defence Therapeutics is enormous. So is the move to Phase I trials.

    "The granting of these patents and the approval of further applications underline our commitment to innovation and the advancement of human health", explains Sébastien Plouffe, CEO and Director of Defence.

    As of now, there is patent protection in Australia for its ADC platform technology. This is based on the ACCUM™ platform, which enables effective antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) that cause targeted cellular accumulation of cytotoxic substances. Antibody-drug conjugation (ADC) technology uses specific antibodies to deliver highly effective drugs directly to target cells. These drugs are designed to attack only the desired cells, leaving the other healthy cells unharmed.

    Australia adds to the patents already granted in the US, Japan and Israel. Japan is the next country where patent protection is imminent. For Defence Therapeutics, these strategic moves are a valuable hedge against competition on the path to commercialization of its platform technology, drugs and vaccines.

    Super Micro Computer records impressive revenue growth according to latest quarterly figures

    State-of-the-art medical applications require equally advanced state-of-the-art computer technology. Super Micro Computer is a hotly traded stock market candidate and producer of semiconductors, cooling systems for cloud servers and intelligent processors. The systems support important and exciting medical research and discoveries to solve some of the industry's biggest challenges. Companies like Defence Therapeutics are generating incredible value by leveraging the data housed within their systems.

    Super Micro offers a complete range of systems to connect data for businesses. The data is collected in databases and fed to downstream analytics and AI systems. These systems then identify problems or defects and learn in real-time. The insights gained can be turned into new business opportunities. The fact that investors are convinced of this is reflected both in Super Micro Computer's share price and in its business.

    In its recently released (link: text: quarterly results (see current presentation), Super Micro reported revenue of USD 3.85 billion, representing a 200% increase year-over-year and a 5% increase quarter-over-quarter. In addition, the Company is executing on its strategy of providing total IT rack solutions for emerging processor offerings. It is close to launching liquid cooling infrastructure solutions to support data centers, racks and management. The focus is on scaling, optimizing and expanding production capacity in San José, Taiwan, and Malaysia.

    For the coming quarter, Super Micro expects revenue of USD 5.1 to 5.5 billion, which corresponds to growth of 133% to 152% compared to the previous year. The sales forecast for the full financial year is between USD 14.7 and 15.1 billion, corresponding to a growth of 107% to 112% compared to the previous year. Golden times for computer companies and their investors.

    Evotec suffers profit slump after cyberattack: Withdrawal from gene therapy business and site closure

    However, data collection also has its pitfalls. Due to a cyberattack in April last year, the Hamburg-based biotech company Evotec has now decided to withdraw from the gene therapy business. To illustrate the scale of the attack, all technology-related business processes were halted to prevent the damage from becoming even greater. Forensic checks were carried out on over 6,000 computers and machines. These were reset or only went online again after a 100% security check. The result was a huge drop in profits due to the paralyzed technology. According to current figures, EUR 26.6 million is missing. The decision to withdraw comes after a decline in results at the beginning of the year. It is in connection with a planned annual contribution to the operating result of over EUR 40 million.

    The withdrawal entails closing the Austrian site in Orth. Evotec's largest customer in this area is the Japanese pharmaceutical company Takeda. In February, however, Takeda's management announced that it would divest a large part of its plant at the Austrian site. 190 Takeda employees and 40 Evotec employees are affected. As part of the restructuring, the Company also closed its chemical activities in Marcy near Lyon (France). At the end of March, Evotec employed 5,055 people worldwide.

    In the first quarter of this year, Evotec's adjusted operating profit decreased to EUR 7.8 million compared to EUR 34.3 million in the same period last year. The high loss is partly due to higher manufacturing, selling and administrative expenses. Revenues decreased by over 2% to just under EUR 209 million.

    Despite these challenges, Evotec reaffirms its forecast for the full year, which anticipates growth in adjusted operating profit in the mid-double-digit percentage range. An update and more detailed guidance for investors is expected with the publication of the half-year report in August 2024.

    Defence Therapeutics strengthens its position in the fight against cancer by winning new patents for its innovative treatment technologies, putting the Canadian biotech company well ahead of its competitors. In its recently published quarterly figures, Super Micro Computer reports remarkable revenue growth of 200%, thanks to rising demand for modern computer technology for storage solutions and data processing technology, including for medical applications. The Silicon Valley makers are thus making a significant contribution to the research and development of new medical findings. Following a cyberattack, Evotec experiences a slump in profits and shrinks itself back to health by withdrawing from the gene therapy business and closing its site in Orth, Austria. Despite these challenges, Evotec confirms its guidance for the full year and plans a strategic realignment to enable further growth. **For investors, this means always looking at both sides of the coin and hedging their investment in a share through risk analysis. In this case, Evotec's patents also offer security.

    Conflict of interest

    Pursuant to §85 of the German Securities Trading Act (WpHG), we point out that Apaton Finance GmbH as well as partners, authors or employees of Apaton Finance GmbH (hereinafter referred to as "Relevant Persons") may hold shares or other financial instruments of the aforementioned companies in the future or may bet on rising or falling prices and thus a conflict of interest may arise in the future. The Relevant Persons reserve the right to buy or sell shares or other financial instruments of the Company at any time (hereinafter each a "Transaction"). Transactions may, under certain circumstances, influence the respective price of the shares or other financial instruments of the Company.

    In addition, Apaton Finance GmbH is active in the context of the preparation and publication of the reporting in paid contractual relationships.

    For this reason, there is a concrete conflict of interest.

    The above information on existing conflicts of interest applies to all types and forms of publication used by Apaton Finance GmbH for publications on companies.

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    Der Autor

    Juliane Zielonka

    Born in Bielefeld, she studied German, English and psychology. The emergence of the Internet in the early '90s led her from university to training in graphic design and marketing communications. After years of agency work in corporate branding, she switched to publishing and learned her editorial craft at Hubert Burda Media.

    About the author

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