Summit Corporation plc
("Summit" or "the Company")
PRE-CLOSE TRADING UPDATE
Oxford, UK, 24 February 2010, Summit (AIM: SUMM), a leading UK drug discovery
company with a portfolio of partnered drug programmes and a proprietary
iminosugar technology platform, announces a pre-close trading update ahead of
its final results for the year ended 31 January 2010. Summit anticipates
announcing its final results in early May 2010.
The Board are pleased with the recent progress of the Company in spite of the
challenging economic climate. The Company is now focussed on developing its
iminosugar platform having disposed of non-core businesses and having made
significant reductions in its cash burn. These changes enabled the Company to
successfully complete a fund-raise in December 2009 and the Board now looks
forward with confidence to reaching a number of key milestones from existing
partnered programmes and the signing of new platform or programme based deals.
Strong Financial Position
In December 2009, Summit raised £5.4 million through a Placing and Open Offer to
current and new investors which, excluding milestone payments from existing and
potential future deals will provide the business with cash resources until at
least December 2011. This investment ensures the Company is funded well beyond
the point where it anticipates receiving significant milestone payments from our
partners and will accelerate the development of Summit's innovative iminosugar
Summit had a cash position of £6.0 million on 31 January 2010.
£2.2 million Wellcome Trust Grant
In addition in December 2009, Summit was awarded a grant worth up to £2.2
million from the Wellcome Trust to fund the development of the Company's C.
difficile infectious disease programme. C. difficile is a life threatening
pathogen for which current therapy options are limited. In 2008 in the UK, C.
difficile was responsible for over three times more deaths than the MRSA
superbug. Summit has identified a novel class of compounds that are effective
against C. difficile and the grant will completely fund their development until
2012 at which time the Company would expect to have a compound ready to enter
human clinical trials. The Company drew down the first instalment of the grant
of £550,000 in January 2010.
The C. difficile programme has significant commercial potential and the Company
will seek to capitalise on this as the programme advances. Furthermore, the
Wellcome Trust funding endorses the scientific innovation and expertise that
exists within Summit.
DMD Programme Enters Clinical Trials
The Company received a further boost in January 2010, whenBioMarin
Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced that it had initiated a Phase 1 clinical study of
SMT C1100 (also known as BMN 195). Discovered by Summit scientists, SMT C1100
is a small molecule utrophin upregulator for the treatment of Duchenne muscular
dystrophy (DMD), a fatal genetic disease for which there is currently no cure.
The programme was licensed to BioMarin in July 2008 and Summit is eligible to
receive significant development and regulatory milestone payments and tiered
royalties rising to a low-teen percentage over this potentially disease
modifying medicine. BioMarin has indicated that initial top-line results from
this Phase I trial are expected in Q3 2010.
New medicines from Iminosugars
Summit's major R&D focus is on developing new medicines from its proprietary
iminosugar drug discovery technology platform. This technology platform is
attracting increasing levels of interest and Summit is exploring potential
collaborations with a number of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies to
investigate its platform in a range of major therapy areas. The Board believes
the next 12 months will be an important period in the development of this
Internally, Summit is currently focusing its research activities in the
multi-billion dollar therapeutic areas of diabetes and infectious diseases.
This includes SMT 14224, which is being developed as a new treatment for type
II diabetes with data on this compound indicating that it potentially works via
a new mechanism of action. Initial marketing of SMT 14224 has resulted in
interest being shown from several leading pharmaceutical companies and Summit is
investing a portion of the new finance into studies designed to add further
value to this programme.
Dr Steven Lee, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Summit commented:
"I am pleased that Summit has emerged from a challenging year as a leaner and
more focussed business. Following the pleasing level of support received from
current and new investors, I believe the business is now well positioned to
deliver shareholder value from our set of novel and increasingly valuable
- END -
For more information, please contact:
Steven Lee, PhD
Richard Pye, PhD Tel: +44 (0)1235 443 951
Singer Capital Markets (Nominated
Shaun Dobson / Claes Spång Tel: +44 (0)20 3205 7500
Tarquin Edwards Tel: +44 (0)7879 458 364
Summit is a leading UK based drug discovery company with a portfolio of
partnered drug programmes and a major focus on developing new therapeutics from
its proprietary iminosugar drug discovery platform.
Summit believes iminosugars are the key to gaining access to several disease
mechanisms where classical drug candidates have had little success, and
therefore offer a major opportunity for the discovery and development of new
Carbohydrates play critical roles in maintaining correct function of many normal
processes in healthy individuals and provide a wealth of new targets for drug
discovery. Iminosugars have the capability of accessing such targets and offer
the potential of generating new medicines in a variety of major therapy areas.
Summit is currently focussed on metabolic diseases, including diabetes, and
Summit has a commercial track record of signing programme agreements and
currently has a product portfolio comprising of a number of drug programmes with
partners including BioMarin Pharmaceuticals, Orient Pharma, Evolva, the Wellcome
Trust and the Lilly TB Drug Discovery Initiative. This portfolio requires no
further investment from Summit but in the future may generate success based
milestone payments of over $160 million and sales royalties rising to a low teen
percentage for the Company.
The company listed on the alternative investment market (AIM) of the London
Stock Exchange in October 2004 - symbol: SUMM. Further information about the
company is available at www.summitplc.com <
Forward Looking Statements
This document contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the
U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking
statements can be identified by words such as "anticipates", "intends", "plans",
"seeks", "believes", "estimates", "expects" and similar references to future
periods, or by the inclusion of forecasts or projections.
Forward-looking statements are based on the Company's current expectations and
assumptions regarding our business, the economy and other future conditions.
Because forward-looking statements relate to the future, by their nature, they
are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that
are difficult to predict. The Company's actual results may differ materially
from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. The Company cautions
you therefore that you should not rely on any of these forward-looking
statements as statements of historical fact or as guarantees or assurances of
future performance. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ
materially from those in the forward-looking statements and regional, national,
global political, economic, business, competitive, market and regulatory