Licensing and collaboration agreements

Recent experience includes:

Bicycle Therapeutics - Bayer

Advised Bicycle Therapeutics plc on a strategic collaboration agreement with Bayer to discover and develop Bicycle radioconjugates for multiple oncology targets.  Under the terms of the agreement, Bayer and Bicycle will collaborate on the development of bicyclic peptides for multiple oncology targets. Bicycle will use its proprietary phage platform to discover and develop bicyclic peptides, and Bayer will be responsible for, and fund, all further preclinical and clinical development, manufacturing, and commercialisation activities. Bicycle will receive a US$45 million upfront payment. It is also eligible to receive development and commercial-based milestone fees, totalling up to US$1.7 billion, as well as tiered royalties on Bicycle-based medicines commercialised by Bayer.  The closing of the transaction was subject to clearance under the U.K. National Security and Investment Act (NSIA) 2021.

Bicycle Therapeutics – Novartis

Advised Bicycle Therapeutics on a strategic collaboration agreement with Novartis to discover and develop multiple targeted radioligand therapies in oncology.  The two companies will develop, manufacture and commercialise Bicycle® radio-conjugates (BRCs) for multiple agreed upon oncology targets.  Under the terms of the agreement, Bicycle will use its proprietary phage platform to discover "Bicycles" to be developed into BRCs. Novartis is responsible for further development, manufacture and commercialisation of the BRCs. Bicycle received a US$50 million upfront payment. It is also eligible to receive development and commercial-based milestone payments totalling up to US$1.7 billion, as well as tiered royalties on Bicycle-based medicines commercialised by Novartis.


Advised BenevolentAI on its recent strategic collaboration with Merck. The collaboration will use BenevolentAI’s end-to-end AI platform capabilities to deliver novel drug candidates – initially for three targets in oncology, neurology and immunology – and to identify and develop innovative compounds through Hit Identification to pre-clinical stage. Under the terms of the agreement, BenevolentAI will be eligible for payments of up to $594 million, consisting of a low double-digit million dollar upfront payment on signing and then potentially discovery, development and commercial milestones. Tiered royalties will also be payable on net sales of any commercialised products.

GE HealthCare

Advised GE HealthCare in relation to its exclusive out-licence to SonoThera of GE HealthCare's Optison and Sonazoid Microbubble Products for use with the SonoThera Ultrasound-guided gene therapy platform.  The worldwide licence agreement allows the microbubble products to be used in the development and commercialisation of Sonothera's novel, ultrasound-guided, nonviral, gene therapy platform.  The platform intends to use microbubble-mediated biophysical process to noninvasively deliver nucleic acid payloads of diverse formats and sizes to selectively target a wide range of organs within the body.  SonoThera is in preclinical development of its technology, preparing for phase 1 clinical trials.


Advised on its €245 million exclusive license agreement deal with Kyowa Kirin, for the development and commercialisation of ilofotase Alfa in Japan.

C4X Discovery 

Advised this AIM-listed pioneering drug discovery company following its risk-share collaboration with LifeArc in relation to the company taking on the leadership of the MALT-1 programme from LifeArc to drive it towards the later stages of drug discovery and deliver a commercial deal.

Vernalis R&D

Advised this previously AIM listed pharmaceutical company on various licence and collaboration agreements including:

  • a drug discovery collaboration with Genentech utilising Vernalis' fragment and structure-based drug discovery platform against an undisclosed target
  • the out-licensing of the worldwide rights to Vernalis' proprietary adenosine receptor antagonist programme to Corvus Pharmaceuticals Inc.
  • a collaboration agreement with Servier, which focuses on complicated molecular targets, some of which, like Mcl1, were considered undruggable
  • the acquisition by Juno Therapeutics, Inc. of RedoxTherapies, Inc., a licensee of Vernalis under its worldwide rights to vipadenant
  • a licence agreement granting Cumulus Oncology exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialise VER250840, a novel, oral, selective, preclinical Chk1 Kinase Inhibitor discovered using Vernalis’ Design Platform.

Cell Medica

Advised this cellular therapeutics company on a number of transactions including:

  • its collaboration with Cell Therapy Catapult in relation to Cell Medica's Cytovir cytomegalovirus product
  • a research collaboration agreement and associated option and licence agreement with University College London and UCL Business Plc in relation to modified T cell receptor products for the treatment of cancer
  • its acquisition of a WT1-TCR cancer immunotherapy from Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult and a collaboration agreement to establish cell therapy manufacture. The transaction involved a suite of agreements including licence agreements, a sale and purchase agreement and a services agreement.


In addition to assisting on day-to-day queries, we advised UCB in relation to a number of business development projects over the past few years. These include a licensing deal in the digital health space, both licensing in and out of products and a collaboration with a manufacturer of a wearable injection device for use with one of UCB’s products.

Shield Therapeutics plc

Shield Therapeutics is a longstanding client who we have advised in relation to each of their outgoing licence agreements for the development and commercialisation of Feraccru® (Shield Therapeutic's therapeutic product for iron deficiency) and the critical manufacturing arrangements that operate alongside the licences.

Oxford Biomedica plc

Advised this FTSE250 gene and cell therapy company on a number of transactions including:

  • on its research and development partnership with Virica Biotech Inc., a specialist in optimising the manufacturing of viral medicines, which will seek to increase the yield and production efficiency of Oxford Biomedica's next generation gene therapies using Virica’s Viral Sensitizers.
  • a discovery collaboration with PhoreMost Limited to develop next-generation CAR-T cell therapies.  PhoreMost will deploy its in-house expertise and next-generation phenotypic screening platform, SITESEEKER®, to identify therapeutic candidates for Oxford Biomedica’s LentiVector gene therapy delivery system.
  • a licence and clinical supply agreement with Juno Therapeutics, a Bristol-Myers Squibb company. The agreement granted Juno Therapeutics a non-exclusive licence to Oxford Biomedica’s LentiVector® platform for its application in CAR-T and TCR-T programmes in oncology and other indications, and additionally put in place a five year Clinical Supply Agreement, which may be extended further. Oxford Biomedica received an upfront payment of $10 million in cash and the agreement provides for the potential of up to an additional $86 million to be payable to Oxford Biomedica upon achievement of certain development and regulatory  milestones related to multiple products and indications; up to $131 million in sales-based milestone payments and an undisclosed royalty on the net sales of products sold by Juno Therapeutics utilising the LentiVector® platform.

Acacia Pharma Ltd

Advised this EURONEXT-listed biopharmaceutical company  focused on developing and commercialising novel products to improve the care of patients undergoing serious medical treatments in relation to a strategic in-licensing transaction with Cosmo Pharmaceuticals N.V. The transaction granted Acacia exclusive US commercialisation rights to BYFAVO (remimazolam) (an ultra-short acting and reversible intravenous sedative/anaesthetic) and was made alongside an equity investment and debt facility by Cosmo. We also advised on the subsequent assignment of such rights from Cosmo to Acacia with the consent of PAION AG, the original developer of remimazolam.

BTG plc

Advised this international specialist healthcare company in relation to its exclusive out-licence agreement with Carrick Therapeutics Ltd for the development and commercialisation of “BTG945” a targeted ovarian cancer drug.

International pharmaceutical company

Advised this company on a strategically important collaboration agreement with Verily LLC (the life sciences arm of Alphabet) in relation to the use of a wearable technology to measure and record patient's symptoms in the context of a Phase 2 clinical trial.

Kymab Limited

We have advised this leading company in relation to a number of research and licensing collaborations with respect to its "Kymouse" human antibody model.

The RNA Medicines Company

Advised this company on a variety of agreements in relation to the exploitation of its proprietary small molecule drug discovery platform targeting small noncoding RNA.

Footfalls & Heartbeats

Advised this Nottingham-based company in relation to a number of licensing deals to commercialise its proprietary process for manufacturing smart fabric which uses nano-scale interactions within the textile to make the fabric itself the sensor, avoiding the need for wires or miniature electronics.