Merck, a science and technology company, will hold its Annual General Meeting this year in virtual form on May 28. The company is thus making use of the possibilities afforded by the German legislator in view of the coronavirus pandemic. Within the scope of the Annual General Meeting, a resolution on the dividend proposal of € 1.30 per share will also be voted on. Payment is planned for June 3.
The Annual General Meeting will be publicly webcast in its entirety on the Internet. Physical participation is not possible. The invitation will be published by May 7, in keeping with the official deadline. Notes on exercising shareholder rights and further information on the virtual Annual General Meeting will be available as of May 7 on the website www.merckgroup.com/agm and in the invitation.
Merck had already announced back in March that it would postpone its Annual General Meeting originally planned for April 24 and hold it in virtual form as soon as possible in order to protect the health and safety of employees and shareholders.
Evonik has signed an agreement to acquire the LACTEL® business of biodegradable polymers from DURECT Corporation for USD 15m. The transaction is expected to close by Q1 2021 pending the satisfaction of certain customary closing conditions. An offer will be extended to each of the 15 employees of DURECT located in Birmingham, Alabama, which are associated with the LACTEL® business to transition to the Evonik.
“The acquisition of the Lactel® business will strengthen both our innovation growth field Healthcare Solutions and Evonik’s position as a globally leading CDMO for drug delivery solutions”, says Johann-Caspar Gammelin, Head of the Nutrition & Care Division of Evonik. The acquisition marks a consequential step in the growth agenda of the life-science division Nutrition & Care. The LACTEL® business will benefit from fast-growing markets such as advanced drug delivery, biomaterials for tissue engineering, and the 3D printing of implantable medical devices.
“It has been a pleasure working with the highly motivated and talented LACTEL® team. We have confidence that Evonik will apply its resources and commitment to excellence to enable the product line and supporting team members to thrive,” says James E. Brown, President and Chief Executive Officer of DURECT Corporation. With Evonik’s global reach, existing and new customers will benefit from tapping into Health Care’s twelve global laboratories staffed with formulation, application and regulatory experts to assist in bringing their products faster to the market.
“The integration of the LACTEL® business into Evonik’s market-leading portfolio of functional excipients, biomaterials and integrated CDMO services will strengthen our position as a preferred development partner and solutions provider for pharmaceutical and medical device customers,” says Thomas Riermeier, Head of the Health Care business line. “By welcoming LACTEL® and members of their team into the Evonik family, we look forward to providing customers with even greater platform versatility as well as other value-adding services.”
Poly(lactide-co-glycolide) polymers are widely used as a functional excipient to control the release of parenteral drug products. They are also utilized to control the biodegradation of implantable medical devices across various orthopedic, cardiovascular, wound healing and other applications.
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