GlobalData CRO invitation

Biovanta-Bosti seeks CROs for preclinical Novochizol study by YE22; aims to lock in EUR 7–10m Series A raise to fund the preclinical trial by YE20, CEO and exec say

Biovanta-Bosti is welcoming global CRO pitches until the end of YE22 for the preclinical development of its nanoparticle aerosol formulation, Novochizol, in COVID-19, said CEO Pavel Shafranovskiy. The company also aims to raise EUR 7–10m in a Series A by YE20, and to finalise global pharma or biotech development/commercialisation and marketing/promotion partnerships, said a spokesperson.

Novochizol can be used to deliver and confine any potential anti-COVID-19 drug to the lungs of acutely ill patients, according to the company website.

Pitching CROs must have expertise in cardiology and respiratory diseases, said Shafranovskiy. The Cyprus-based company does not have a preference for the size of the retained CROs, he added.

The entire development of a Good Manufacturing Platform (GMP) for Novochizol as a pharma-grade excipient and for Novochizol’s formulations is executed via C-squared Pharma, a medium-sized Luxembourg-based contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), said the spokesperson.

Financing and partnering plans

Biovanta-Bosti aims to raise EUR 7–10m Series A by YE20 to fund the further safety and toxicity preclinical development of Novochizol, the spokesperson said, adding the company is looking for funding from venture capital firms and family offices. The Series A round will offer a 50% stake to either be given to a sole investor or shared among multiple investors, added Shafranovskiy.

The company is in several early stage discussions with potential investors, said Shafranovskiy, noting Biovanta-Bosti is not currently seeking financial advisors or banking assistance.

Biovanta-Bosti is in early discussions for development/commercialisation and marketing/promotion partnering, the spokesperson said. These discussions started one month ago with Cancer Research and Biotechnology, a medium-sized Swiss biopharmaceutical company, noted the spokesperson. This is to investigate the potential of Novochizol-based drug formulations in medical indications relevant to COVID-19, namely infection-related respiratory and cardiovascular conditions, hypertension, ocular manifestations and endothelial inflammation in different organs, the spokesperson explained. Royalties, milestone payments or
upfront payments would be a preferred payment plan, the spokesperson said.

Out-licensing partnerships for Novochizol are also sought by YE20, the spokesperson said. The ideal partner will have experience in cardiology and oncology, as most of the
company’s work has been done in arrhythmia and hypertension, the spokesperson noted.

by Bernarda Tundzhay in London