Séamus Mulligan pumps $86m into new drug venture

Entrepreneur cashes in investment in Jazz Pharmaceuticals to fund new business

Séamus Mulligan  co-founded Dublin-based Adapt with fellow serial pharmaceutical entrepreneurs David Brabazon and Eunan Maguire

Séamus Mulligan co-founded Dublin-based Adapt with fellow serial pharmaceutical entrepreneurs David Brabazon and Eunan Maguire

 

Entrepreneur Séamus Mulligan has cashed in shares worth $86 million (€62 million) in Jazz Pharmaceuticals which will entirely be used to fund a new business called Adapt Pharma.

Mr Mulligan has co-founded Dublin-based Adapt with fellow serial pharmaceutical entrepreneurs David Brabazon and Eunan Maguire.

All three men previously worked with Elan Pharmaceuticals before they successfully co-founded a company called Azur Pharma, which merged with Jazz Pharmaceuticals in 2012.

Mr Mulligan worked with Elan for 20 years, helping it grow from being a drug delivery company into a research focused pharmaceutical organisation.

In total the three co-founders have put up a $100 million war chest to fund Adapt which they plan to grow by acquiring niche drug products which are in late stage development.


Niche drugs
As the three men previously did with Azur, they hope to eventually grow and manage a portfolio of niche drugs with Adapt that will have a primary focus on the North American market.

On its website Adapt states it plans to focus on “prescription medicines that can positively impact the lives of patients with specialist medical conditions”.

Adapt is understood to be well funded from its own resources for the medium term but it may seek additional outside investment if required as it identifies suitable acquisitions.

Mulligan is chief executive and chairman of Adapt, with Brabazon as chief financial officer and Maguire as chief operating officer. Adapt was founded in November 2013.


Filing
A filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 4th shows that Mulligan sold 550,000 shares in Jazz Pharmaceuticals at a price of $156.25, raising $85.94 million.

This represented about a quarter of his remaining 1.45 million shares in the company. Based on yesterday’s prices on the Nasdaq Mr Mulligan’s remaining shares were worth about $220 million. Mr Mulligan remains a director of Jazz.

His previous company Azur’s merger with Jazz was an all-stock deal which valued the company at $500 million.

In February, Jazz announced plans to invest €50 million in a new manufacturing plant near Athlone which will create 50 jobs when it is completed in 2016.