Transaction Case Studies


Situation Assessment

  • Xyphos Biosciences was the surviving company from AvidBiotics’ split of its immunotherapy and antibacterial businesses. The company had developed a best-in-class next generation convertible CAR and bispecific technology that overcomes many of the limitations of currently approved products
  • At the time of engagement with Locust Walk, the company was roughly 18 months from IND and seeking to rapidly execute a financing to advance its pipeline
  • To maximize optionality, competitive pressure and leverage with interested parties, Locust Walk and Xyphos determined a multi-track process would increase the likelihood of the best outcome
  • As a result, Locust Walk was engaged to solicit strategic partners in addition to investors

Key Activities

  • Prepared high-impact marketing materials (teasers, management presentations, and a private placement memorandum) to emphasize the broad applicability of the ACCEL platform and differentiation of Xyphos’ product pipeline
  • Conducted a broad, targeted outreach campaign to 185 global and regional life-science focused VCs, family offices/high net worth individuals, corporate VCs, and institutional investors
  • Conducted a comprehensive outreach campaign to 92 strategic partners with a focus on immuno-oncology focused players
  • Led numerous companies and investors through a confidential due diligence process and facilitated discussions with several interested parties
  • Provided strategic advice on deal structure and term sheet and final agreement negotiations
  • Worked in collaboration with legal and accounting teams to drive transaction to close
  • Provided a Fairness Opinion based on multiple intrinsic and extrinsic valuation methodologies

Successful Outcome

  • Xyphos was successfully acquired by Astellas in December 2019
  • Xyphos was acquired for $120M upfront with milestone considerations of up to $545M, the largest controllable cell therapy deal to date
  • Investors in Xyphos received outsized returns from receipt of the upfront payment, and have an opportunity for additional returns through downstream payments
  • Deal enables the development and subsequent commercialization of a potential best-in-class cell-therapy and bispecific platform in the hands of a market leader in oncology

Link to press release

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