Pharma Focus Europe

Ajinomoto Co., Inc. Finalizes Acquisition of Forge Biologics for $620 Million

Monday, November 13, 2023

Ajinomoto Co., Inc. ("Ajinomoto Co."; TYO: 2802) and Forge Biologics (Forge) have officially entered into a definitive agreement for Ajinomoto Co. to acquire Forge in an all-cash transaction valued at $620 million. Forge, a significant player in genetic medicines, operates as a viral vector and plasmid contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) and a clinical-stage therapeutics company. The company facilitates the journey from conceptualization to production of potentially life-changing gene therapies. All of Forge's development and manufacturing activities take place at Hearth, its specially designed 200,000 square foot cGMP facility in Columbus, Ohio, where it employs over 300 individuals.

Forge, expressed enthusiasm about the merger, highlighting the significant growth Forge has experienced since its establishment in 2020. Miller emphasized the shared commitment of both teams to investing in innovation for the advancement of genetic medicines, with the goal of providing much-needed therapies to patients. The acquisition by Ajinomoto Co. is seen as a strategic move to support Forge's global business expansion and further its mission of enabling access to life-changing discoveries.

Ajinomoto's Bio-Pharma Services Department Co., sees Forge's expertise in gene therapy development and manufacturing as a transformative addition to Ajinomoto's healthcare sector. This aligns with Ajinomoto's ASV Initiatives 2030 roadmap, focusing on core growth areas. Otake anticipates that Forge's capabilities will enhance Ajinomoto's Bio-Pharma Services business, fostering innovation and creating new value for communities and society.

Forge Board of Directors, views this acquisition as a significant step in Forge's growth journey. He recognizes the impact of Forge's technical advancements, state-of-the-art facilities, and experienced management in the biotechnology market.

The transaction is expected to be finalized by the end of the fourth quarter of 2023, pending customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals. Following the completion of the acquisition, Forge will become a fully consolidated subsidiary of Ajinomoto Co., Inc. Centerview Partners LLC served as the lead financial advisor, while Ice Miller LLP provided legal advice to Forge in connection with the transaction. Chardan Capital Markets LLC also offered financial advice.



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