An oro-mucosal drug delivery company headquartered in Perth, SUDA Pharmaceuticals Ltd (ASX: SUD) uses its OroMist® technology for the development of low-risk oral sprays. The company reformulates the existing pharmaceuticals into an oral spray to better meet the patients’ needs and increase the bioavailability of administered medications.
The leading pharmaceutical company today informed through an operational update on the Australian Stock Exchange that the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of SUDA, Mr Stephen Carter is back at work full time from 25th July 2019. Mr Carter was hospitalised in the USA and Australia from 10th June to 6th July. As per the company, he has been devoting more time at the office since the middle of July with an improvement in his health.
Mr Carter took charge as the CEO and MD of SUDA in October 2010 with an extensive experience of 30 years in the pharmaceutical industry. He had served many publicly listed companies as both MD and Chairman before joining SUDA.
With Mr Carter back on board, the company is soon expected to provide a detailed update on the anagrelide project. Recently, the European Patent Office informed SUDA that it intends to grant the company’s Anagrelide patent. The company’s board is also in the midst of submitting the appeal for ArTiMist® oral spray with the final date of 14th August 2019.
Mr Carter expressed his gratitude that the business of the company was able to operate unaffected during this challenging period. According to him, the recent senior management appointments and Mr David Phillips’ transition underlined the strength of the current board.
Source: Company’s Presentation (4th June 2019)
Kudos to the SUDA’s Executive Team
In the absence of Mr Carter, the experienced executive team of SUDA ensured that the company’s operations continued to run effectively. The company’s board was delighted to witness the effectiveness of detailed delegation program and minimal impact of Mr Carter’s absence on the overall critical operations of the company. The board confirms that the release of any material information was not affected during the period and was in line with the ASX Listing Rules requirements.
Besides, Mr Carter continued to communicate with the management and board during his absence, making sure that the partnering discussions and the key projects remained on track.
As per the company, there was a minor impact on few of the less significant business operations due to Mr Carter’s illness like writing and the release of project updates.
Recent Appointments Benefitted SUDA
Some of the recent appointments made by the company to the board, including the appointment of bio-entrepreneur, Mr Paul Hopper as the Non-Executive Chairman; and Mr David Simmonds as the non-executive Director, have turned out to be favorable for the company.
Mr. Hopper is currently functioning as a non-executive director of Prescient Therapeutics Ltd (ASX: PTX); Chairman of Vaxinia Pty Ltd, Semexion Pty Ltd, Imugene Ltd (ASX: IMU) and BioScience Oncology Pty Ltd.
The new non-executive board members, Mr Hopper and Mr Simmonds, have been making their marks on SUDA’s business by working on the development of key focus initiatives that will be implemented soon by the company. The new members have also been engaged in the process of strategic reviews during the period.
On 17th May 2019, the company made a transition in the role of Mr David Phillips to the non-executive director. Mr Phillips joined the board as a non-executive director on 9th April 2018, but he took over the role as the Chief Business Officer on an interim basis in July 2018 to lead the business development activities. The board asked Mr Phillips to continue his role as the non-executive director in May 2019, given his 30 years of experience in the global healthcare industry and some of the recently signed agreements with Mitsubishi Tanabe Singapore, Strides and Zelda Therapeutics. The company expected him to continue focussing on ZolpiMist™ and Asia-Pacific opportunities.
Apart from the recently appointed members to the company’s board, Mr Andrew Curtis who leads SUDA’s US and European business development efforts, is working hard in developing strong links in the large pharmaceutical companies in the USA, with an emphasis on platform technology deals. He is also in discussion with key potential partners regarding SUDA’s co-development and portfolio projects.
ZolpiMist™ Franchise: Mr Phillips has been working on the expansion of ZolpiMist™ franchise with several late stage discussions in place. The company notified that it has progressed well with the Australian Registration of ZolpiMist™ and is awaiting feedback from the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) in the near future.
In April this year, the company announced that the TGA had accepted and considered the MAA (Marketing Authorisation Application) for SUDA’s ZolpiMist™ Oral spray for evaluation. The ZolpiMist™ Oral spray is a US FDA approved oro-mucosal spray used for the treatment for insomnia. The TGA was to take 255 days to provide an opinion and complete its review of the Marketing Authorisation file for ZolpiMist™.
Progress on Co-Development Projects: Besides the ZolpiMist™ related-work, Mr Phillips is negotiating with many companies regarding the new co-development projects. He is also holding discussions with potential partners related to SUDA’s portfolio projects. Two weeks ago, he led a project development session with the representatives of Strides Pharma Science Limited in Perth. In November 2018, SUDA entered into a strategic partnership with Strides for the development and commercialisation of the SUD-001H, company’s novel oral spray of sumatriptan used to treat migraine headache, in the US market.
The company seems to be well positioned to fast-track the anagrelide cancer project, the oral sprays for ZolpiMist™ (sleep inducer), Sumatriptan (migraine) and Midazolam (sedative & epilepsy), along with the promising projects in the pipeline.
Stock Performance: SUDA is currently trading at AUD 0.004 by the close of trading hours on 25th July 2019. The stock has generated a return of 40.35 per cent in the last three months.
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