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As filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on July 28, 2022
Registration
No. 333-260619                
 
 
 
SECURITIES AND
EXCHANGE
COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
 
 
Amendment No. 1 to
FORM
S-1
REGISTRATION STATEMENT
UNDER
THE SECURITIES ACT OF 1933
 
 
ROIVANT SCIENCES LTD.
(Exact Name of Registrant as Specified in Its Charter)
 
 
 
Bermuda
 
2834
 
98-1173944
(State or Other Jurisdiction of
Incorporation or Organization)
 
(Primary Standard Industrial
Classification Code Number)
 
(I.R.S. Employer
Identification Number)
Suite 1, 3rd Floor
11-12
St. James’s Square
London SW1Y 4LB
United Kingdom
+44 207 400 3347
(Address, Including Zip Code, and Telephone Number, Including Area Code, of Registrant’s Principal Executive Offices)
 
 
Corporation Service Company
251 Little Falls Drive
Wilmington, Delaware 19808
(800)
927-9801
(Name, Address, Including Zip Code, and Telephone Number, Including Area Code, of Agent For Service)
 
 
Copy to:
Derek J. Dostal
Stephen A. Byeff Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
450 Lexington Avenue
New York, New York 10017
(212) 450-4000
 
 
Approximate date of commencement of proposed sale to the public
: From time to time after the effective date of this registration statement.
If any of the securities being registered on this form are to be offered on a delayed or continuous basis pursuant to Rule 415 under the Securities Act of 1933, check the following box.  ☒
If this form is filed to register additional securities for an offering pursuant to Rule 462(b) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.  ☐
If this form is a post-effective amendment filed pursuant to Rule 462(c) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.  ☐
If this form is a post-effective amendment filed pursuant to Rule 462(d) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering.  ☐
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a
non-accelerated
filer, a smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company” and “emerging growth company” in Rule
12b-2
of the Exchange Act.
 
Large accelerated filer      Accelerated filer  
       
Non-accelerated filer      Smaller reporting company  
       
         Emerging growth company  
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 7(a)(2)(B) of the Securities Act.  
 
 
The Registrant hereby amends this Registration Statement on such date or dates as may be necessary to delay its effective date until the Registrant shall file a further amendment which specifically states that this Registration Statement shall thereafter become effective in accordance with Section 8(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 or until the Registration Statement shall become effective on such date as the Commission, acting pursuant to said Section 8(a), may determine.
 
 
 

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EXPLANATORY NOTE
Roivant Sciences Ltd. (the “Company”) is filing this Post-Effective Amendment No. 1 to its Registration Statement on Form
S-1
(File
No. 333-260619)
(this “Post-Effective Amendment”) pursuant to Section 10(a)(3) of the Securities Act to update the initial registration statement, which was previously declared effective by the Securities and Exchange Commission on November 9, 2021 to (i) include the Company’s consolidated financial statements and the notes thereto included in its Annual Report on Form
10-K
for the year ended March 31, 2022 and (ii) update certain other information in the registration statement.
No additional securities are being registered under this Post-Effective Amendment. All applicable registration fees were paid at the time of the original filing of the registration statement.

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The information in this preliminary prospectus is not complete and may be changed. Neither we nor the selling securityholders may sell these securities until the registration statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission is effective. This preliminary prospectus is not an offer to sell these securities and is not soliciting an offer to buy these securities in any jurisdiction where the offer or sale is not permitted.
 
PRELIMINARY PROSPECTUS
SUBJECT TO COMPLETION, DATED JULY 28, 2022
 
 
595,134,445 Common
Shares
30,750,261 Common Shares Issuable Upon Exercise of Warrants
10,214,365 Private Placement Warrants
 
 
This prospectus relates to the issuance by us of up to (i) 20,535,896 common shares, $0.0000000341740141 par value per share (the “Common Shares”), that are issuable by us upon the exercise of the outstanding public warrants (the “Public Warrants”), which were previously registered, and (ii) 10,214,365 Common Shares that are issuable by us upon the exercise of the private warrants (the “Private Placement Warrants” and, collectively with the Public Warrants, the “Warrants”) originally issued in a private placement to Patient Square Capital LLC (the “MAAC Sponsor”). See “Explanatory Note.”
This prospectus also relates to the potential offer and sale from time to time by the securityholders named in this prospectus or their permitted transferees (the “Holders”) of (i) up to 595,134,445 of our Common Shares, consisting of (x) 22,000,000 Common Shares issued in the PIPE Financing (as defined herein), (y) up to 10,214,365 Common Shares issuable upon exercise of the Private Placement Warrants and (z) 562,920,080 issued and outstanding Common Shares held by certain Holders (including Common Shares underlying vested restricted share awards), and (ii) the Private Placement Warrants. We will not receive any proceeds from the sale of Common Shares or Private Placement Warrants by the Holders pursuant to this prospectus.
The Holders may offer, sell or distribute all or a portion of the securities hereby registered publicly or through private transactions at prevailing market prices or at negotiated prices. We will not receive any of the proceeds from such sales of the Common Shares or Warrants, except with respect to amounts received by us upon the exercise of the Warrants. We will bear all costs, expenses and fees in connection with the registration of these securities, including with regard to compliance with state securities or “blue sky” laws. The
Holders
will bear all commissions and discounts, if any, attributable to their sale of Common Shares or Warrants. See “Plan of Distribution.”
Our Common Shares and Public Warrants are listed on The Nasdaq Global Market under the symbols “ROIV” and “ROIVW,” respectively. On July 27, 2022, the last reported sale price of our Common Shares was $4.19 per Common Share and the last reported sale price of our Warrants was $0.64 per Warrant.
 
 
We are an “emerging growth company” under federal securities laws and are subject to reduced public company reporting requirements. Investing in our securities involves a high degree of risk. You should review carefully the risks and uncertainties described under the heading “Risk Factors” beginning on page 6 of this prospectus, and under similar headings in any amendment or supplements to this prospectus.
Neither the Securities and Exchange Commission nor any state securities commission has approved or disapproved of these securities or passed upon the adequacy or accuracy of this prospectus. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offense.
The date of this prospectus is                     , 2022.

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F-1
 
 
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ABOUT THIS PROSPECTUS
This prospectus is part of a registration statement on Form
S-1
that we filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) using the “shelf” registration process. Under this shelf registration process, the Holders may, from time to time, sell the securities offered by them described in this prospectus. We will not receive any proceeds from the sale by such Holders of the securities offered by them described in this prospectus. This prospectus also relates to the issuance by us of the shares of Common Shares issuable upon the exercise of any Warrants. We will receive proceeds from any exercise of the Warrants for cash.
Neither we nor the Holders have authorized anyone to provide you with any information other than that provided in this prospectus, as well as any information incorporated by reference into this prospectus and any applicable prospectus supplement. Neither we nor the Holders can provide any assurance as to the reliability of any other information that others may give you. Neither we nor the Holders are making an offer of these securities in any jurisdiction where the offer is not permitted. You should not assume that the information in this prospectus, any applicable prospectus supplement or any documents incorporated by reference is accurate as of any date other than the date of the applicable document. Since the respective dates of this prospectus and the documents incorporated by reference into this prospectus, our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects may have changed.
We may also provide a prospectus supplement or post-effective amendment to the registration statement to add information to, or update or change information contained in, this prospectus. You should read both this prospectus and any applicable prospectus supplement or post-effective amendment to the registration statement together with the additional information to which we refer you in the sections of this prospectus entitled “
Where You Can Find More Information
.”
Unless the context indicates otherwise, references in this prospectus to the “Company,” “Roivant,” “we,” “us,” “our” and similar terms refer to Roivant Sciences Ltd., a Bermuda exempted limited company, and its consolidated subsidiaries. Note that references in this prospectus to Roivant’s development pipeline, product candidate pipeline or discovery stage pipeline may omit certain programs, product candidates or assets that are not material to Roivant individually or in the aggregate.
 
ii

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FREQUENTLY USED TERMS
“Business Combination” means the transactions contemplated by the Business Combination Agreement, pursuant to which Merger Sub merged with and into MAAC, with MAAC surviving the merger.
“Business Combination Agreement” means the business combination agreement, dated as of May 1, 2021, as amended, by and among Roivant, MAAC and Merger Sub.
“Common Shares” means each Common Share of Roivant, par value $0.0000000341740141 per share.
“Effective Time” means the effective time of the closing of the Business Combination.
“MAAC” means (x) prior to the Business Combination, Montes Archimedes Acquisition Corp., a Delaware corporation and (y) from and after the Business Combination, Roivant Rhine Holdings, Inc.
“MAAC Class A Shares” means each share of Class A common stock of MAAC, par value $0.0001 per share.
“MAAC Class B Shares” means each share of Class B common stock of MAAC, par value $0.0001 per share.
“MAAC Shares” means, collectively, the MAAC Class A Shares and the MAAC Class B Shares.
“MAAC Sponsor” means Patient Square Capital LLC.
“MAAC Warrant” means each whole warrant of MAAC entitling the holder to purchase one MAAC Class A Share per warrant at a price of $11.50 per share.
“Merger Sub” means Rhine Merger Sub, Inc., a Delaware corporation.
“PIPE Financing” means the sale and issuance to the PIPE Investors of an aggregate of 22,000,000 MAAC Class A Shares at a purchase price of $10.00 per share, for aggregate gross proceeds of $220,000,000.
“PIPE Investors” means those certain institutional and accredited investors that entered into the Subscription Agreements in connection with the PIPE Financing.
“Private Placement Warrants” means the 10,214,365 warrants sold simultaneously with the closing of the initial public offering (including through exercise of the over-allotment option) of MAAC at a price of $1.00 to the MAAC Sponsor and then converted into warrants to purchase Common Shares in connection with the closing of the Business Combination.
“Public Warrants” means the 20,535,912 warrants sold simultaneously with the closing of the initial public offering of MAAC and then converted into warrants to purchase Common Shares in connection with the closing of the Business Combination. After giving effect to rounding to eliminate fractional warrants in connection with the closing of the Business Combination, there were 20,535,896 Public Warrants outstanding as of September 30, 2021.
“Public Vants” means Arbutus Biopharma Corp., Immunovant, Inc. and Sio Gene Therapies, Inc.
“Sponsor Support Agreement” means the agreement, dated as of May 1, 2021, as amended by Amendment No. 1, dated as of June 9, 2021 and Amendment No. 2, dated as of September 30, 2021, pursuant to which the MAAC Sponsor agreed to undertake certain actions in support of the Business Combination, including, but not limited to, delivering a voting proxy pursuant to which the MAAC Sponsor voted in favor of the proposals presented for approval herein.
 
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“Subscription Agreements” means the subscription agreements entered into by the PIPE Investors providing for the purchase by the PIPE Investors at the Effective Time of an aggregate of 22,000,000 MAAC Class A Shares at a price per share of $10.00.
“Roivant” means Roivant Sciences Ltd., a Bermuda exempted limited company, together with its consolidated subsidiaries, as context requires.
“Warrants” means, collectively, the Private Placement Warrants and the Public Warrants.
“Transactions” means the Business Combination and the other transactions contemplated by the Business Combination Agreement.
 
iv

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CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This prospectus may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 21E of the Exchange Act. Our forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding our or our management team’s expectations, hopes, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future, and statements that are not historical facts. In addition, any statements that refer to projections, forecasts or other characterizations of future events or circumstances, including any underlying assumptions, are forward-looking statements. The words “anticipate,” “believe,” “continue,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intends,” “may,” “might,” “plan,” “possible,” “potential,” “predict,” “project,” “should,” “would” and similar expressions may identify forward-looking statements, but the absence of these words does not mean that a statement is not forward-looking.
The forward-looking statements contained in this prospectus are based on our current expectations and beliefs concerning future developments and their potential effects on us taking into account information currently available to us. There can be no assurance that future developments affecting us will be those that we have anticipated. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, they could cause our actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements. Some factors that could cause actual results to differ include, but are not limited to risk associated with:
 
   
our limited operating history and risks involved in biopharmaceutical product development;
 
   
our limited experience as a commercial-stage company and ability to successfully commercialize VTAMA
®
(tapinarof);
 
   
our ability to raise additional capital to fund our business on acceptable terms or at all;
 
   
the fact that we will likely incur significant operating losses for the foreseeable future;
 
   
the impact of public health outbreaks, epidemics or pandemics (such as the
COVID-19
pandemic) on our business (including our clinical trials and preclinical studies), operations and financial condition and results;
 
   
our ability to acquire,
in-license
or discover new product candidates;
 
   
our Vant structure and the potential that we may fail to capitalize on certain development opportunities;
 
   
clinical trials and preclinical studies, which are very expensive, time-consuming, difficult to design and implement and involve uncertain outcomes;
 
   
the unproven nature of our approach to the discovery and development of product candidates from our small molecule discovery engine;
 
   
the novelty, complexity and difficulty of manufacturing certain of our products and product candidates, including any manufacturing problems that result in delays in development or commercialization of our products and product candidates;
 
   
difficulties we may face in enrolling and retaining patients in clinical trials and/or clinical development activities;
 
   
the results of our clinical trials not supporting our proposed claims for a product candidate;
 
   
changes in interim,
top-line
and/or preliminary data from our clinical trials changing as more data becoming available or being delayed due to audit and verification process;
 
   
changes in product manufacturing or formulation that could lead to the incurrence of costs or delays;
 
   
the failure of any third-party we contract with to conduct, supervise and monitor our clinical trials to perform in a satisfactory manner or to comply with applicable requirements;
 
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the fact that obtaining approvals for new drugs is a lengthy, extensive, expensive and unpredictable process that may end with our inability to obtain regulatory approval by the FDA or other regulatory agencies in other jurisdictions;
 
   
the failure of our clinical trials to demonstrate substantial evidence of the safety and efficacy of our products and product candidates, including, but not limited to, scenarios in which our products and product candidates may cause adverse effects that could delay regulatory approval, discontinue clinical trials, limit the scope of approval or generally result in negative media coverage of us;
 
   
our inability to obtain regulatory approval for a product or product candidate in certain jurisdictions, even if we are able to obtain approval in certain other jurisdictions;
 
   
our ability to effectively manage growth and to attract and retain key personnel;
 
   
any business, legal, regulatory, political, operational, financial and economic risks associated with conducting business globally;
 
   
our ability to obtain and maintain patent and other intellectual property protection for our technology, products and product candidates;
 
   
the inadequacy of patent terms and their scope to protect our competitive position;
 
   
the failure to issue (or the threatening of their breadth or strength of protection) or provide meaningful exclusivity for our current and future products and product candidates of our patent applications that we hold or have
in-licensed;
 
   
the fact that we do not currently and may not in the future own or license any issued composition of matter patents covering certain of our products and product candidates and our inability to be certain that any of our other issued patents will provide adequate protection for such products and product candidates;
 
   
the fact that our largest shareholders (and certain members of our management team) own a significant percentage of our stock and will be able to exert significant control over matters subject to shareholder approval;
 
   
the outcome of any pending or potential litigation, including but not limited to our expectations regarding the outcome of any such litigation and costs and expenses associated with such litigation;
 
   
changes in applicable laws or regulations;
 
   
the possibility that we may be adversely affected by other economic, business and/or competitive factors; and
 
   
other risks and uncertainties, including those described under the heading “Risk Factors.”
These risks are not exhaustive. New risk factors emerge from time to time and it is not possible for our management to predict all risk factors, nor can we assess the impact of all factors on our business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements. In addition, statements that “we believe” and similar statements reflect our beliefs and opinions on the relevant subject. These statements are based upon information available to us as of the date of this prospectus, and while we believe such information forms a reasonable basis for such statements, such information may be limited or incomplete, and our statements should not be read to indicate that we have conducted an exhaustive inquiry into, or review of, all potentially available relevant information. These statements are inherently uncertain and investors are cautioned not to unduly rely upon these statements. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of such statements.
 
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SUMMARY OF THE PROSPECTUS
This summary highlights selected information appearing elsewhere in this prospectus or the documents incorporated by reference herein. Because it is a summary, it may not contain all of the information that may be important to you. To understand this offering fully, you should read this entire prospectus, the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part and the documents incorporated by reference herein carefully, including the information set forth under the heading “Risk Factors” and our financial statements.
Overview of the Company
We are building the next-generation “big pharma” company, organized to harness modern technologies and computational tools as well as the entrepreneurial spirit of nimble biotechnology companies at scale. Our mission is to improve the delivery of healthcare to patients by treating every inefficiency as an opportunity.
We are a diverse team of experienced drug developers, scientists, physicians, company builders, data scientists and engineers, biopharma investors, physicists and business development professionals dedicated to improving the lives of patients. At Roivant, we combine our team’s extensive experience and multi-disciplinary expertise with innovative technologies to identify and advance potentially transformative medicines.
We deploy a hypothesis-driven approach to identify novel or clinically-validated targets and biological pathways in areas of high unmet medical need. We then seek to acquire,
in-license
or discover promising drug candidates against those targets or pathways. Our small molecule discovery engine is powered by leading computational physics and machine learning (“ML”) capabilities for in silico drug design.
We develop drugs and drug candidates in subsidiary companies we call “Vants” with a distinct approach to sourcing talent, aligning incentives and deploying technology. Each of our Vant teams is built with deep relevant expertise to promote successful execution of our development strategy. Our Vants continue to benefit from the support of the Roivant platform and technologies that are built to address inefficiencies in the drug discovery, development and commercialization process.
Our agile Vant model has allowed us to rapidly add capabilities in diverse therapeutic areas, including immunology, dermatology and oncology, and modalities, including biologics, topicals and bifunctional small molecules. We have launched and taken public multiple Vants, resulting in an aggregate ownership stake of approximately $589 million in our publicly-traded Vants as of March 31, 2022 (inclusive of the value of certain shares of Myovant Sciences Ltd. as to which Roivant has a return right under certain circumstances). The Vant model also enables a modular approach to the monetization of therapies we advance through development, allowing us to pursue commercialization of some products independently, while selectively establishing partnerships for other Vants or divesting of the Vants entirely.
Since our founding in 2014, we have:
 
   
commercially launched VTAMA
®
(tapinarof) cream 1% for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adults;
 
   
conducted nine international Phase 3 trials, the last eight of which have been successful;
 
   
consummated a $3 billion upfront partnership with Sumitomo Pharma Co., Ltd. (“Sumitomo”);
 
   
received five FDA approvals for drugs developed by Vants launched by Roivant, including VTAMA and four drugs that received FDA approval after their transfer to Sumitomo;
 
   
built a broad and differentiated pipeline of drugs and drug candidates ranging from early discovery to commercial stage; and
 
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launched Roivant Discovery, our small molecule discovery engine, consisting of a collection of advanced computational physics capabilities, integrated with an
in-house
wet lab facility.
Roivant’s principal executive office is located at Suite 1, 3rd Floor,
11-12
St. James’s Square, London SW1Y 4LB, United Kingdom.
Summary Risk Factors
An investment in our Common Shares involves substantial risk. The occurrence of one or more of the events or circumstances described in the section of this prospectus entitled “Risk Factors,” alone or in combination with other events or circumstances, may have a material adverse effect on our business, cash flows, financial condition and results of operations. Important factors and risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, among others, the following:
Risks Related to Our Business and Industry
 
   
Our limited operating history and the inherent uncertainties and risks involved in biopharmaceutical product development may make it difficult for us to execute on our business model and for you to assess our future viability.
 
   
We may never achieve or maintain profitability.
 
   
We will require additional capital to fund our operations, and if we fail to obtain necessary financing, we may not be able to successfully market our products, acquire or
in-license
new products or product candidates, complete the development and commercialization of our products and product candidates and continue to pursue our drug discovery efforts.
 
   
We have limited experience as a commercial company and the marketing and sale of VTAMA
®
(tapinarof) or any future products may be unsuccessful or less successful than anticipated.
 
   
We may not be successful in our efforts to
acquire, in-license or
discover new product candidates.
 
   
We face risks associated with the allocation of capital and personnel across our businesses.
 
   
We face risks associated with the Vant structure.
 
   
The global pandemic resulting from the outbreak of the novel strain of coronavirus,
SARS-CoV-2,
which causes
COVID-19,
could adversely impact our business, including the marketing of our products and our ongoing clinical trials and preclinical studies.
 
   
Clinical trials and preclinical studies are very expensive, time-consuming, difficult to design and implement and involve uncertain outcomes. We may encounter substantial delays in clinical trials, or may not be able to conduct or complete clinical trials or preclinical studies on the expected timelines, if at all.
 
   
Our approach to the discovery and development of product candidates from our small molecule discovery engine is unproven, which makes it difficult to predict the time, cost of development and likelihood of successfully developing any product candidates from these platforms.
 
   
Certain of our product candidates are novel, complex and difficult to manufacture.
 
   
Obtaining approval of a new drug is an extensive, lengthy, expensive and inherently uncertain process, and the FDA or another regulator may delay, limit or deny approval.
 
   
Our clinical trials may fail to demonstrate substantial evidence of the safety and efficacy of product candidates that we may identify and pursue for their intended uses, which would prevent, delay or limit the scope of regulatory approval and commercialization.
 
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Our products and product candidates may cause adverse effects or have other properties that could delay or prevent their regulatory approval, cause us to suspend or discontinue clinical trials, abandon further development or limit the scope of any approved label or market acceptance.
 
   
We depend on the knowledge and skills of our senior leaders and may not be able to manage our business effectively if we are unable to attract and retain key personnel.
 
   
We will need to expand our organization and may experience difficulties in managing this growth, which could disrupt operations.
 
   
If we are unable to obtain and maintain patent and other intellectual property protection for our technology, products and product candidates or if the scope of the intellectual property protection obtained is not sufficiently broad, we may not be able to compete effectively in our markets.
 
   
If the patent applications we hold or have
in-licensed
with respect to our products or product candidates fail to issue, if their breadth or strength of protection is threatened, or if they fail to provide meaningful exclusivity for our current and future products or product candidates, it could dissuade companies from collaborating with us to develop product candidates, and threaten our ability to commercialize our products.
 
   
Patent terms and their scope may be inadequate to protect our competitive position on current and future products and product candidates for an adequate amount of time.
Risks Related to Our Securities, Our Jurisdiction of Incorporation and Certain Tax Matters
 
   
If our performance does not meet market expectations, the price of our securities may decline.
 
   
We have incurred and will continue to incur increased costs as a result of operating as a public company and our management has devoted and will continue to devote a substantial amount of time to new compliance initiatives.
 
   
Our failure to timely and effectively implement controls and procedures required by Section 404(a) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act could have a material adverse effect on our business.
 
   
Anti-takeover provisions in our memorandum of association,
bye-laws
and Bermuda law could delay or prevent a change in control, limit the price investors may be willing to pay in the future for our Common Shares and could entrench management.
 
   
Our largest shareholders and certain members of our management own a significant percentage of our Common Shares and will be able to exert significant control over matters subject to shareholder approval.
 
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THE OFFERING
 
Issuer
Roivant Sciences Ltd.
Issuance of Common Shares
 
Common Shares offered by the Company
Up to 30,750,261 Common Shares, consisting of (i) 20,535,896 Common Shares issuable upon exercise of the Public Warrants and (ii) 10,214,365 Common Shares issuable upon the exercise of the Private Placement Warrants.
 
Common Shares outstanding prior to exercise of all Warrants
684,789,169 Common Shares (as of September 30, 2021) (including Common Shares underlying vested restricted share awards).
 
Common Shares outstanding assuming exercise of all Warrants
715,539,430 Common Shares (based on the number of Common Shares outstanding as of September 30, 2021) (including Common Shares underlying vested restricted share awards).
 
Use of Proceeds
We will receive up to an aggregate of approximately $353.6 million from the exercise of the Warrants, assuming the exercise in full of all of the Warrants for cash. We expect to use any such net proceeds from the exercise of the Warrants for general corporate purposes. See “Use of Proceeds.”
Resale of Common Shares and Warrants
 
Common Shares offered by the Holders
Up to 595,134,445 Common Shares, consisting of (i) 22,000,000 Common Shares issued in the PIPE Financing, (ii) up to 10,214,365 Common Shares issuable upon exercise of the Private Placement Warrants and (iii) 562,920,080 issued and outstanding Common Shares held by certain Holders (including Common Shares underlying vested restricted share awards).
 
Warrants offered by the Holders
Up to 10,214,365 Private Placement Warrants.
 
Redemption
The Warrants are redeemable in certain circumstances. See the section entitled “Description of Securities—Warrants” for further discussion.
 
Use of Proceeds
We will not receive any proceeds from any sale of Common Shares by the Holders that has been or will be completed. See “Use of Proceeds.”
 
Redemption
The Warrants are redeemable in certain circumstances. See “Description of Securities—Redeemable Warrants” for further discussion.
 
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Market for Common Shares and Warrants
The Common Shares and Public Warrants are currently traded on The Nasdaq Global Market under the symbols “ROIV” and “ROIVW,” respectively.
 
Risk Factors
See “Risk Factors” and other information included in this prospectus for a discussion of factors you should consider before investing in our securities.
For additional information concerning the offering, see “Plan of Distribution.”
 
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RISK FACTORS
Our business involves a high degree of risk. You should carefully consider the risks described below, together with the other information contained in this prospectus, including “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and our consolidated financial statements and the related notes appearing elsewhere in this prospectus, as well as the risks, uncertainties and other information set forth in the reports and other materials filed or furnished by us and our majority-controlled subsidiary, Immunovant, Inc. (“Immunovant”), with the SEC. We cannot assure you that any of the events discussed in the risk factors below will not occur. These risks could have a material and adverse impact on our business, prospects, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows. If any such events were to happen, the trading shares of our Common Shares could decline, and you could lose all or part of your investment.
Risks Related to Our Business and Industry
Risks Related to Our Financial Position and Strategy
Our limited operating history and the inherent uncertainties and risks involved in biopharmaceutical product development may make it difficult for us to execute on our business model and for you to assess our future viability. We have not generated significant revenue from our operations since inception, and there is no guarantee that we will do so in the future.
We are a newly commercial-stage biopharmaceutical and healthcare technology company with a limited operating history upon which you can evaluate our business and prospects. We were formed in April 2014, and our operations to date have been limited to acquiring or
in-licensing
product candidates, efforts to discover new product candidates through our small molecule discovery engine, the creation or acquisition of healthcare technology companies and products, starting or acquiring subsidiary businesses, which we refer to as the Vants, in which to house biopharmaceutical products, product candidates or technologies, and hiring management teams to operate the Vants and oversee the development of our products, product candidates and technologies.
We have recently commenced our transition from a clinical-stage to a company with commercial-stage assets. In May 2022, VTAMA
®
(tapinarof) for the treatment of adults with plaque psoriasis received regulatory approval in the U.S. VTAMA is not currently approved in any other jurisdictions and we do not have any other product candidates that have received regulatory approvals in the U.S. or in any other jurisdiction.
Our ability to execute on our business model and generate revenues depends on a number of factors including our ability to:
 
   
successfully commercialize VTAMA;
 
   
identify new acquisition or
in-licensing
opportunities;
 
   
successfully complete ongoing preclinical studies and clinical trials and obtain regulatory approvals for our current and future products and product candidates;
 
   
successfully identify new product candidates through our small molecule discovery engine and advance those product candidates into preclinical studies and clinical trials;
 
   
successfully market our healthcare technology products and services;
 
   
raise additional funds when needed and on terms acceptable to us;
 
   
attract and retain experienced management and advisory teams;
 
   
add operational, financial and management information systems and personnel, including personnel to support clinical, preclinical manufacturing and commercialization efforts and operations;
 
   
launch commercial sales of future product candidates, whether alone or in collaboration with others, including establishing sales, marketing and distribution systems;
 
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initiate and continue relationships with third-party suppliers and manufacturers and have commercial quantities of products and product candidates manufactured at acceptable cost and quality levels and in compliance with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (the “FDA”) and other regulatory requirements;
 
   
set acceptable prices for products and product candidates and obtain coverage and adequate reimbursement from third-party payors;
 
   
achieve market acceptance of products and product candidates in the medical community and with third-party payors and consumers; and
 
   
maintain, expand and protect our intellectual property portfolio.
If we cannot successfully execute on these objectives, our business may not succeed and the price of our Common Shares may be negatively impacted.
Because of the numerous risks and uncertainties associated with biopharmaceutical product development and commercialization, we are unable to predict the timing or amount of increased expenses, or when we will be able to generate any meaningful revenue or achieve or maintain profitability, if ever. Our expenses could increase beyond expectations if we are required by the FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities to perform studies or clinical trials in addition to those that are currently anticipated or to otherwise provide data beyond that which we currently believe is necessary to support an application for marketing approval or to continue clinical development, or if there are any delays in any of our or our future collaborators’ clinical trials or the development of our product candidates that we may identify. We anticipate incurring significant costs associated with commercializing VTAMA and any future product candidates, if approved, as well as ongoing compliance efforts.
We may never be able to develop new marketable drugs or successfully commercialize a marketable drug or achieve profitability. To become profitable, we must succeed in developing and commercializing products that generate significant revenue. Revenue from the sale of any products or product candidate for which regulatory approval is obtained will be dependent, in part, upon the size of the markets in the territories for which we have or may gain regulatory approval, the accepted price for the product, the ability to obtain reimbursement at any price, the strength and term of patent exclusivity for the product, the competitive landscape of the product market, and whether we own the commercial rights for that territory. For example, even though VTAMA for the treatment of adults with plaque psoriasis has received regulatory approval in the U.S., we can provide no assurances that we will be able to achieve profitability based on sales in that indication alone or that we will be able to receive approval of and commercialize VTAMA in other indications or in other jurisdictions. Even if we achieve profitability in the future, we may not be able to sustain profitability in subsequent periods. Our failure to achieve sustained profitability would depress the value of our company and could impair our ability to raise capital, expand our business, expand our pipeline, market our products and, if approved, product candidates, and continue our operations. Our prior losses, combined with expected future losses, have had and will continue to have an adverse effect on our shareholders’ equity and working capital.
We may never achieve or maintain profitability.
Investment in biopharmaceutical product development is highly speculative because it entails substantial upfront capital expenditures and significant risk that a product candidate will fail to gain regulatory approval or become commercially viable. While we have received regulatory approval for one product candidate, VTAMA for the treatment of adults with plaque psoriasis in the U.S., we have yet to receive marketing approval for any of our other product candidates anywhere in the world and we have not generated meaningful product revenues from the commercial sale of our biopharmaceutical products. We cannot estimate with precision the extent of our future losses. We may never generate meaningful product revenue from the commercial sales of our products or,
if approved, product candidates or achieve or maintain profitability. It is possible that we will continue to incur substantial operating losses for the foreseeable future. Our ability to generate meaningful product revenue and
 
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achieve profitability is dependent on the ability to complete the development of our products and product candidates, obtain necessary regulatory approvals for our current and future products and product candidates and manufacture and successfully market our current and future products and product candidates alone or in collaboration with others.
We will require additional capital to fund our operations, and if we fail to obtain necessary financing, we may not be able to successfully market our products, acquire or
in-license
new products or product candidates, complete the development and commercialization of our products and product candidates and continue to pursue our drug discovery efforts.
Acquiring or
in-licensing,
discovering, developing, commercializing and marketing biopharmaceutical products and product candidates is expensive and time consuming, and we expect to require additional capital to acquire or
in-license
new products or product candidates, pursue the development and commercialization of our current and future products and product candidates, and continue our drug discovery efforts. We are also responsible for payments to third parties under our license and acquisition agreements, including milestone and royalty payments. Because of the inherent uncertainties in these activities—including the outcome of preclinical and clinical trials and the regulatory approval process—we cannot reasonably estimate the actual amounts necessary to successfully complete the development, regulatory approval process and commercialization of our product candidates or any future product candidates.
Our future funding requirements, both near- and long-term, will depend on many factors, including, but not limited to:
 
   
the time and costs necessary to complete our ongoing, planned and future clinical trials;
 
   
the time and costs necessary to pursue regulatory approvals for our current and future product candidates;
 
   
the costs associated with future acquisitions or
in-licensing
transactions;
 
   
the progress, timing, scope and costs of our preclinical studies, clinical trials and other related activities, including the ability to enroll patients in a timely manner for our ongoing and planned clinical trials and potential future clinical trials;
 
   
the costs associated with our ongoing, planned and future preclinical studies and other drug discovery activities;
 
   
our ability to successfully identify and negotiate acceptable terms for third-party supply and contract manufacturing agreements with contract manufacturing organizations (“CMOs”);
 
   
the costs of obtaining adequate clinical and commercial supplies of raw materials and drug products for our products and product candidates;
 
   
our ability to successfully commercialize VTAMA, including:
 
   
the manufacturing, selling and marketing costs associated with VTAMA, including the cost and timing of expanding sales and marketing capabilities or entering into strategic collaborations with third parties; and
 
   
the amount and timing of sales and other revenues from VTAMA, including the sales price and the availability of adequate third-party reimbursement.
 
   
the cost of filing, prosecuting, defending and enforcing our patent claims and other intellectual property rights, including current and future patent infringement actions brought against third parties;
 
   
the cost of defending potential intellectual property disputes, including patent infringement actions brought by third parties against us or any of our current or future products or product candidates; and
 
   
our ability to hire, attract and retain qualified personnel.
 
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We cannot be certain that additional capital will be available to us or the Vants on acceptable terms, or at all. If we or the Vants are unable to raise additional capital in sufficient amounts or on terms acceptable to us, we may have to significantly delay, scale back or discontinue our
in-licensing
and acquisition, discovery, development, commercialization and marketing activities. In addition, attempting to secure additional capital may divert the time and attention of our management from
day-to-day
activities and harm our business. Because of the numerous risks and uncertainties associated with our business, we are unable to estimate the amounts of increased capital outlays, operating expenditures and capital requirements associated with our current and future product development programs and discovery efforts. Moreover, risks associated with broader market conditions including high levels of inflation and market volatility, both of which have been observed in recent months, may further adversely impact our ability to obtain financing on acceptable terms or at all.
We expect that significant additional capital will be needed in the future to continue our planned operations. Until such time, if ever, that we can generate substantial revenues, we expect to continue to finance our cash needs through a combination of equity offerings, debt financings, strategic alliances and license and development agreements or other collaborations at Roivant and the Vants. To the extent that we raise additional capital by issuing equity securities at Roivant or the Vants, our existing shareholders’ ownership, or our ownership in the Vants, may experience substantial dilution, and the terms of these securities may include liquidation or other preferences that could harm the rights of our shareholders. Additionally, any agreements for future debt or preferred equity financings, if available, may involve covenants limiting or restricting our ability to take specific actions, such as incurring additional debt, making capital expenditures or declaring dividends. If we raise additional funds through collaborations, strategic alliances or marketing, distribution or licensing arrangements with third parties, we may have to relinquish valuable rights to our products and product candidates, future revenue streams, research programs or technologies or grant licenses on terms that may not be favorable to us. The foregoing restrictions associated with potential sources of additional capital may make it more difficult for us to raise additional capital or to pursue business opportunities, including potential acquisitions.
If adequate funds are not available to us, we may be required to forego potential
in-licensing
or acquisition opportunities, delay, limit or terminate one or more development or discovery programs, scale back marketing efforts for our current and future products or be unable to expand operations or otherwise capitalize on business opportunities, which could materially affect our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.
We have limited experience as a commercial company and the marketing and sale of VTAMA or any future products may be unsuccessful or less successful than anticipated.
In May 2022, the FDA approved VTAMA for the treatment of adults with plaque psoriasis in the U.S. While we have launched VTAMA in the U.S., we have limited experience as a commercial company and therefore face significant risks and uncertainties relating to the commercialization of VTAMA and any future products that receive marketing approval, including:
 
   
our ability to recruit and retain effective sales, marketing and customer service personnel;
 
   
our ability to obtain access to physicians or persuade adequate numbers of physicians to prescribe VTAMA and any future products;
 
   
the inability to manufacture and to price VTAMA and any future products at a price point sufficient to ensure an adequate and attractive level of profitability;
 
   
the extent to which coverage and adequate reimbursement for these products will be available from government health administration authorities, private health insurers and other organizations;
 
   
the risks associated with potential
co-promotion
or partnership agreements, including the failure to realize the expected benefits of such arrangements; and
 
   
other unforeseen costs, expenses and risks associated with the commercialization of biopharmaceutical products, including compliance costs.
 
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In addition, in preparation for our commercial launch of VTAMA, we expect to significantly increase the amount of cash we spend in order to expand our commercial infrastructure. We expect this level of increased cash spending to increase into calendar year 2023. The increased level of cash spending will support our transition to an integrated commercial biopharmaceutical company and to support the commercialization of VTAMA. To the extent that we are able to gain regulatory approval for VTAMA in any other jurisdiction besides the U.S. or to gain regulatory approval for any of our other product candidates in any jurisdiction, we would expect to incur additional increased cash costs.
Our limited experience as a commercial-stage company means that there is limited information about our ability to overcome many of the risks and uncertainties encountered by companies commercializing products in the biopharmaceutical industry, including the risks and uncertainties outlined above. Further, as we continue to develop and seek regulatory approval of additional product and products candidates, as well as additional indications for VTAMA, and to pursue regulatory approvals for VTAMA and other products and product candidates outside the U.S., it could be difficult for us to obtain and devote the resources necessary to successfully manage our commercialization efforts. If we are unable to manage the risks and uncertainties associated with the commercialization of VTAMA and any future products or product candidates that receive marketing approval, we may be unable to generate significant revenues from the sales of these products and product candidates to achieve profitability, which will materially affect our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.
We may not be successful in our efforts to acquire,
in-license
or discover new product candidates.
The success of our business depends in part on our ability to successfully identify new product candidates, whether through acquisitions or
in-licensing
transactions or through our internal discovery capabilities. Our acquisition and
in-licensing
efforts focus on identifying assets in development by third parties across a diverse range of therapeutic areas that, in our view, are underserved or undervalued. Our strategy often entails designing
low-cost
studies that result in quick
“go/no-go”
decisions when deciding whether or how to proceed with future development for a given asset, once acquired. We may decide to proceed with the development of a product candidate on this basis and later determine that the more costly and time intensive trials do not support the initial value the product candidate was thought to hold. Even if a product candidate does prove to be valuable, its value may be less than anticipated at the time of investment. We may also face competition for attractive investment opportunities. A number of entities compete with us for such opportunities, many of which have considerably greater financial and technical resources. If we are unable to identify a sufficient number of such product candidates, or if the product candidates that we identify do not prove to be as valuable as anticipated, we will not be able to generate returns and implement our investment strategy and our business and results of operations may suffer materially.
Our drug discovery efforts are centered on our small molecule discovery engine. As a company we have relatively limited experience in drug discovery generally, with targeted protein degradation and covalency as approaches to target inhibition and with computational discovery as a technology. Our future success depends, in part, on our ability to successfully use these approaches and technologies to identify promising new product candidates and eventually advance those product candidates through preclinical studies and clinical trials.
Only a limited number of product candidates using the approaches of targeted protein degradation or covalency have been approved in the United States or Europe. The data underlying the feasibility of developing therapeutic products based on these approaches remains both preliminary and limited. We have not yet succeeded
and may not succeed in advancing any product candidates developed using our small molecule discovery engine into clinical trials, demonstrating the efficacy and safety of such product candidates or obtaining regulatory approval thereafter. As a result, it is difficult to predict the time and cost of product candidate development from our small molecule discovery engine and we cannot predict whether the application of these approaches will result in the development and regulatory approval of any products. Any problems we experience in the future related to this platform or any of our related development programs may cause significant delays or unanticipated
 
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costs or may prevent the development of a commercially viable product. Any of these factors may prevent us from completing our preclinical studies or any clinical trials that we may initiate or commercializing any internally discovered product candidates we may develop on a timely or profitable basis, if at all.
Although we believe that our computational discovery platform has the potential to identify more promising molecules than traditional research methods and to accelerate drug discovery efforts, our focus on using our platform technology to discover and design molecules with therapeutic potential may not result in the discovery and development of commercially viable products for us. Computational discovery is a relatively new approach to drug development. As an organization, we have not yet developed any product candidates using this technology that have advanced into clinical trials and we may fail to identify potential product candidates for clinical development. Even if we are able to advance product candidates identified through our computational discovery platform into clinical trials, those trials may not be successful in demonstrating the efficacy and safety of such product candidates and, as a result, we may not be able to obtain regulatory approvals for those product candidates.
Any such failure to
in-license
or acquire new product candidates from third parties, or to discover new product candidates using our small molecule discovery engine or computational discovery platforms, would have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
We face risks associated with the allocation of capital and personnel across our businesses.
Because we have limited financial and management resources, we have to make challenging decisions regarding the allocation of capital and personnel across our businesses. We face certain risks associated with these decisions and may fail to capitalize on viable commercial product candidates or profitable market opportunities. For example, we may decide not to pursue a particular
in-licensing
or acquisition opportunity, or a potential target indication for a product candidate, that later proves to have greater commercial potential than our current and planned development programs and product candidates. Similarly, our management’s attention to one product or product candidate may divert their attention from another opportunity that ultimately might have proven more successful. Our spending on current and future research and development programs and other future product candidates may not yield any commercially viable future product candidates. If we do not accurately evaluate the commercial potential or target market for a particular product candidate, we may relinquish valuable rights to that product candidate through collaboration, licensing or other royalty arrangements in cases in which it would have been more advantageous for us to retain sole development and commercialization rights to such future product candidate.
Additionally, we may pursue additional
in-licenses
or acquisitions of product candidates or programs, which entails additional risk to us. Identifying, selecting and acquiring promising product candidates requires substantial technical, financial and human resources expertise. Efforts to do so may not result in the actual acquisition or
in-license
of a successful product candidate, potentially resulting in a diversion of our management’s time and the expenditure of our resources with no resulting benefit. For example, if we are unable to identify programs that ultimately result in approved products, we may spend material amounts of our capital and other resources evaluating, acquiring and developing products that ultimately do not provide a return on our investment.
We face risks associated with the Vant structure.
Our products and product candidates are developed at our Vants, which operate similarly to independent biopharmaceutical companies. While we believe that there are significant competitive advantages to this structure, as compared to traditional pharmaceutical companies or smaller biopharma companies, the Vant structure also poses certain risks for our business.
Operating the Vants independently, rather than under a centralized, consolidated management team, may result in increased costs at the Vants, as certain functions or processes, including sales and marketing, clinical
 
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and nonclinical personnel, business development, finance, accounting, human resources and legal functions, are replicated across the Vants. There may also be certain
start-up
costs, associated with the establishment of a new Vant or integration of a newly acquired business into a Vant, which are greater under the Vant model than they would be under a centralized model. The use of the Vant model may also entail increased costs for us, including the time and expenses associated with hiring Vant CEOs and management teams, overseeing Vant equity incentive arrangements and managing compliance-related risks, including the internal controls, reporting systems and procedures necessary for us to operate as a public company. We may also be exposed to increased “key employee” risks, in the event a Vant CEO were to depart, including the loss of other senior Vant personnel, potentially resulting in adverse impacts to commercialization or development work at the Vant. These increased expenses, complexities and other challenges may make using and scaling the Vant model more challenging and costly than it would be for a traditional pharmaceutical company to both operate and expand the number of product candidates under development, which could have a material adverse effect on our consolidated business, financial condition, results of operations or prospects. This decentralized model could also make compliance with applicable laws and regulations more challenging to monitor and may expose us to increased costs that could, in turn, harm our business, financial condition, results of operations or prospects.
In addition, a single or limited number of the Vants may, now or in the future, comprise a large proportion of our value. Similarly, a large proportion of our consolidated revenues may be derived from one or a small number of Vants. For example, our only approved product, VTAMA, was developed and is being commercialized by Dermavant, one of our Vants. Any adverse development at Dermavant or any other Vant, including the loss of key members of management, the termination of a key license agreement or other loss of the intellectual property underlying a product or product candidate or the failure of a clinical trial for a product candidate under development at the Vant, could have a material adverse effect on our consolidated business, financial condition, results of operations or prospects.
We manage the Vants in part through our designees who serve on the Vant boards of directors. In their capacities as directors, those individuals owe fiduciary duties to the Vants and their shareholders under applicable law, which may at times require them to take actions that are not directly in our interest. To the extent any such actions have an adverse effect on the value of our ownership interest in the Vant, it could further adversely impact our consolidated business, financial condition, results of operations or prospects.
The global pandemic resulting from the outbreak of the novel strain of coronavirus,
SARS-CoV-2,
which causes
COVID-19,
could adversely impact our business, including the marketing of our products and our ongoing clinical trials and preclinical studies.
Public health crises such as pandemics or similar outbreaks could adversely impact our business. In December 2019, a novel strain of coronavirus,
SARS-CoV-2,
which causes
COVID-19,
emerged.
COVID-19
has since spread globally, including to the countries in which we and our business partners conduct business. Governments in affected regions have implemented, and may continue to implement or
re-implement,
safety precautions, including quarantines, travel restrictions, business closures, cancellations of public gatherings and other measures they deem necessary. Like many other organizations and individuals, we and our employees have taken additional steps to avoid or reduce infection, including limiting travel and implementing remote work arrangements. We will continue to actively monitor the situation and may take further actions that could alter our business operations as may be required by national, state or local authorities, or that we determine are in the best interests of our employees and shareholders.
We have experienced, and may in the future experience, disruptions as a result of
COVID-19
or future pandemics that severely impact our business, commercial and marketing activities, clinical trials and preclinical studies, including:
 
   
our ability to sell and market our current and future products and, if approved, product candidates, including as a result of government- or employer-imposed remote work orders and travel and workplace visitor restrictions;
 
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a decrease in patient health care utilization due to quarantines, travel restrictions, work from home orders or other public health measures;
 
   
delays or disruptions in our commercial supply chain including as a result of quarantines, travel restrictions, work from home orders or other public health measures;
 
   
delays or difficulties in enrolling patients in our clinical trials, and the consequences of such delays or difficulties, including terminating clinical trials prematurely;
 
   
delays or difficulties in clinical site initiation, including difficulties in recruiting clinical site investigators and clinical site staff;
 
   
delays or disruptions in nonclinical experiments due to unforeseen circumstances at contract research organizations (“CROs”), and vendors along their supply chain;
 
   
increased rates of patients withdrawing from our clinical trials following enrollment as a result of contracting
COVID-19,
being forced to quarantine or not accepting home health visits;
 
   
diversion of healthcare resources away from the conduct of clinical trials, including the diversion of hospitals serving as our clinical trial sites and hospital staff supporting the conduct of our clinical trials;
 
   
interruption of key clinical trial activities, such as clinical trial site data monitoring, due to limitations on travel imposed or recommended by federal or state governments, employers and others or interruption of clinical trial subject visits and study procedures (particularly any procedures that may be deemed
non-essential),
which may impact the integrity of subject data and clinical study endpoints;
 
   
interruption or delays in the operations of the FDA and comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory agencies, which may impact review and approval timelines;
 
   
interruption of, or delays in receiving, supplies of our product candidates from our contract manufacturing organizations due to staffing shortages, production slowdowns or stoppages and disruptions in delivery systems;
 
   
limitations on employee resources that would otherwise be focused on the conduct of our clinical trials and preclinical studies, including because of sickness of employees or their families, the desire of employees to avoid contact with large groups of people and increased reliance on working from home or mass transit disruptions;
 
   
other disruptions to our business generally, including remote working activities and the implementation of new health and safety requirements for our employees; and
 
   
waiver or suspension of patent or other intellectual property rights.
These and other factors arising from the
COVID-19
pandemic, including risks relating to the resurgence or emergence of new variants of
SARS-CoV-2,
including variants and
sub-variants
thereof, the efficacy and availability of vaccines and rates of vaccination (including vaccine booster shots), the pandemic worsening in countries that are already afflicted with
COVID-19
or the
COVID-19
pandemic continuing to spread to additional countries or returning to countries where the pandemic has been partially contained, could further adversely impact our ability to market our products and conduct clinical trials and other business activities, and could have a material adverse impact on our operations and financial condition and results.
To the extent the
COVID-19
pandemic adversely affects our business, operations and financial results, it may also have the effect of heightening many of the other risks described elsewhere, such as those relating to our clinical development operations, the supply chain for our ongoing and planned clinical trials and our ability to seek and receive regulatory approvals for our product candidates.
We face risks associated with potential future payments related to our products and product candidates.
Our asset
in-licensing
transactions typically involve low upfront payments combined with milestone and royalty payments contingent upon the achievement of certain future development and commercial events. These
 
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arrangements generally involve a payment or payments upon the achievement of certain regulatory milestones, including regulatory approval, and then royalty payments upon the achievement of specified levels of sales, which can extend for up to the life of a product. Some of these payments may become due before a product is generating revenues, in which case we may not have sufficient funds available to meet our obligations. If this were to occur, we would default on our payment obligations and could face penalties, delays in commercialization or development activities or reputational damage. Even for a product that is commercialized and generating revenue, payments could become due that are so large that the investment is not profitable or is less profitable than anticipated. For example, this could occur if at the time of the initial investment, we overestimated the value of the product and agreed to a payment schedule using these inflated estimates. If we are unable to make milestone and royalty payments related to our product candidates when due, our business and prospects could suffer.
Our investment strategy and future growth relies on a number of assumptions, some or all which may not be realized.
Our investment strategy and plans for future growth rely on a number of assumptions, including, in the case of our products and product candidates, assumptions related to adoption of a particular therapy, incidence and prevalence of an indication, use of a product or product candidate versus competitor therapies and size of the addressable patient populations. Some or all of these assumptions may be incorrect. We cannot accurately predict whether our products or product candidates will achieve significant market acceptance in line with these assumptions or whether there will be a market for our products or product candidates that reaches the anticipated size. If any of these assumptions are incorrect or overstated, our results and future prospects will be materially and adversely affected.
We face risks associated with past and future acquisitions, partnerships, alliances or other strategic transactions.
We have historically and may in the future enter into various types of corporate transactions, including acquisitions, strategic partnerships, alliances or collaborations and licensing transactions. These past and future transactions pose certain risks to our business, including:
 
   
increased operating expenses and cash requirements;
 
   
the assumption of indebtedness or contingent liabilities;
 
   
the issuance of our or our subsidiaries’ equity securities which would result in dilution to existing shareholders;
 
   
assimilation of operations, intellectual property and products, including difficulties associated with integrating new personnel;
 
   
diversion of management time and focus away from operating our business;
 
   
the loss of key personnel and uncertainties in our ability to maintain key business relationships;
 
   
risks and uncertainties associated with the counterparty to any such transaction;
 
   
our inability to eventually generate revenue from acquired technology or products or product candidates sufficient to meet our objectives in undertaking the acquisition or even to offset the associated acquisition and maintenance costs;
 
   
litigation or other claims, including claims from terminated employees, customers, former shareholders or other third parties.
In addition, if we undertake such a transaction, we may issue dilutive securities, assume or incur debt obligations, incur large
one-time
expenses and acquire intangible assets that could result in significant future amortization expenses, any of which could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, financial condition or results of operations.
 
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Further, any such transactions may be complex, time-consuming and expensive to execute and may be subject to regulatory requirements that could impact our business. There can be no guarantee that we will be able to successfully consummate such acquisitions or other transactions, which could result in a significant diversion of management and other employee time, as well as substantial
out-of-pocket
costs.
If any acquisitions or other transactions are not completed for any reason, we may incur significant costs and the market price of our Common Shares may decline. In addition, even if an acquisition or other transaction is consummated, the integration of the acquired business, product or other assets into our Company may be complex and time-consuming, and we may not achieve the anticipated benefits, cost-savings or growth opportunities we expect. Potential difficulties that may be encountered in the integration process include the following: integrating personnel, operations and systems; coordinating geographically dispersed organizations; distracting management and employees from current operations; maintaining the existing business relationships of the acquired company; and managing inefficiencies associated with integrating the operations of the Company and the acquired business, product or other assets. For biopharmaceutical businesses we have acquired or may acquire in the future, or alliances or joint ventures in the biopharmaceutical industry, we may encounter numerous difficulties in developing, manufacturing and marketing any new products or product candidates related to such businesses, which may delay or prevent us from realizing the expected benefits or enhancing our business. We cannot assure you that, following any such acquisition, alliance or partnership, we will achieve the expected synergies to justify the transaction.
Our failure to address these risks or other problems encountered in connection with past or future acquisitions, partnerships or strategic alliances could cause us to fail to realize the anticipated benefits of these transactions, incur unanticipated liabilities and harm our business generally. There is also a risk that current or future acquisitions will result in the shareholder litigation, incurrence of debt, contingent liabilities, amortization expenses or incremental operating expenses, any of which could harm our financial condition or results of operations.
If we obtain a controlling interest in additional companies in the future, it could adversely affect our operating results and the value of our Common Shares, thereby disrupting our business.
As part of our strategy, we expect to form and invest in additional wholly-owned and majority-owned subsidiaries. Investments in our existing and any future subsidiaries involve numerous risks, including, but not necessarily limited to, risks related to:
 
   
conducting research and development activities in new therapeutic areas or treatment approaches in which we have little to no experience;
 
   
diversion of financial and managerial resources from existing operations;
 
   
actual or potential conflicts among new and existing Vants to the extent they have overlapping or competing areas of focus or pipeline products;
 
   
successfully negotiating a proposed acquisition,
in-license
or investment in a timely manner and at a price or on terms and conditions favorable to us;
 
   
successfully combining and integrating a potential acquisition into our existing business to fully realize the benefits of such acquisition;
 
   
the impact of regulatory reviews on a proposed acquisition,
in-license
or investment; and
 
   
the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted with respect to the proposed acquisition,
in-license
or investment.
If we fail to properly evaluate potential acquisitions,
in-licenses,
investments or other transactions associated with the creation of new research and development programs or the maintenance of existing ones, we might not achieve the anticipated benefits of any such transaction, we might incur costs in excess of what we anticipate, and management resources and attention might be diverted from other necessary or valuable activities.
 
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Our business may suffer reputational harm due to our inability to successfully commercialize VTAMA or other failures of our product candidates, which could have further adverse impacts on our business.
Our inability to successfully commercialize VTAMA or the failure of any of our product candidates in ongoing or future clinical trials or preclinical studies, in addition to having a direct adverse impact on our business and prospects, could also have a lasting negative impact on our reputation, which could, in turn, impact our ability to successfully enter into future licensing arrangements or other transactions with potential counterparties, raise future capital or attract key personnel to join us. As a result, our business and prospects would be materially harmed and our results of operations and financial condition would likely suffer materially.
Risks Related to the Development of Our Products and Product Candidates
Clinical trials and preclinical studies are very expensive, time-consuming, difficult to design and implement and involve uncertain outcomes. We may encounter substantial delays in clinical trials, or may not be able to conduct or complete clinical trials or preclinical studies on the expected timelines, if at all.
Our biopharmaceutical product candidates that are in clinical development or preclinical studies will require, as applicable, extensive clinical testing before a New Drug Application (“NDA”) or other similar application for regulatory approval, such as a Biologics License Application (“BLA”) or an application for marketing authorization in the European Union (“EU”) or United Kingdom (“UK”), may be submitted, or extensive preclinical testing before an Investigational New Drug application (“IND”) or an application for authorization to conduct a clinical trial in the EU or UK may be submitted, a Clinical Trial Application (“CTA”). We cannot provide any assurance that we will submit an IND, NDA, CTA or other similar application for regulatory approval for our product candidates within projected timeframes or whether any such application will be approved by the relevant regulatory authorities.
Clinical trials and preclinical studies are very expensive, time-consuming and difficult to design and implement, in part because they are subject to rigorous regulatory requirements. For instance, the FDA, an institutional review board (“IRB”), an Ethics Committee (“EC”) or other regulatory authorities may not agree with the proposed analysis plans or trial design for the clinical trials of our product candidates, and during any such review, may identify unexpected efficacy or safety concerns, which may delay the effective date of an IND or approval of an NDA, BLA or similar application. The FDA, the European Medicines Agency (“EMA”) or the European Commission or other relevant regulatory authority may also find that the benefits of any product candidate in any applicable indication do not outweigh its risks in a manner sufficient to grant regulatory approval.
The FDA or other regulatory authorities may also not agree with the scope of our proposed investigational plan. For example, they may find that our proposed development program is not sufficient to support a marketing authorization application, or that the proposed indication is considered to be too broad. Moreover, the FDA or other regulatory authorities may also refuse or impose certain restrictions on our reliance on data supporting our clinical trial application or marketing authorization application should such data originate from studies outside of the relevant jurisdiction or be affected by regulatory
non-compliance,
including issues of data integrity. In the EU, data derived from clinical trials that were conducted outside the EU cannot be used to support a CTA unless the clinical trial was registered on a relevant database. In each case, this could delay the clinical development and authorization timeline for a given product candidate.
Failures can occur at any stage of development, including clinical trials or preclinical studies, and we could encounter problems that cause us to abandon or repeat clinical trials or preclinical studies. In addition, results from clinical trials or preclinical studies may require further evaluation, delaying the next stage of development or submission of an IND or an NDA or similar application. Further, product candidates in later stages of clinical trials may fail to show the desired safety and efficacy results despite having successfully progressed through preclinical and earlier stage clinical trials. Such product candidates may exhibit safety signals in later stage clinical trials that they did not exhibit in earlier studies or trials. A number of companies in the biopharmaceutical
 
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industry have suffered significant setbacks in, or the discontinuation of, advanced clinical trials with a product candidate due to lack of efficacy or adverse safety findings, despite having promising results in earlier trials or studies. Likewise, the results of early clinical trials or preclinical studies of our product candidates may not be predictive of the results of future development programs. There can also be no assurance that the results of studies conducted by collaborators or other third parties with similar product candidates in similar indications will be viewed favorably or indicative of our own future trial results.
The commencement and completion of preclinical studies and clinical trials may be delayed by several factors, including:
 
   
failure to obtain regulatory authorization to commence a clinical trial or reaching consensus with regulatory authorities regarding the design or implementation of our studies;
 
   
other regulatory issues, including the receipt of any inspectional observations on FDA’s
Form-483,
Warning or Untitled Letters, clinical holds, or complete response letters or similar communications/objections by other regulatory authorities;
 
   
unforeseen safety issues, or subjects experiencing severe or unexpected adverse events;
 
   
occurrence of serious adverse events in trials of the same class of agents conducted by other sponsors;
 
   
lack of effectiveness during clinical trials;
 
   
resolving any dosing issues, including those raised by the FDA or other regulatory authorities;
 
   
inability to reach agreement on acceptable terms with prospective CROs and clinical trial sites, the terms of which can be subject to extensive negotiation and may vary significantly among different CROs and trial sites;
 
   
slower than expected rates of patient recruitment or failure to recruit suitable patients to participate in a trial;
 
   
failure to add a sufficient number of clinical trial sites;
 
   
unanticipated impact from changes in or modifications to protocols or clinical trial design, including those that may be required by the FDA or other regulatory authorities;
 
   
inability or unwillingness of clinical investigators or study participants to follow our clinical and other applicable protocols or applicable regulatory requirements;
 
   
an IRB or EC refusing to approve, suspending, or terminating the trial at an investigational site, precluding enrollment of additional subjects, or withdrawing their approval of the trial;
 
   
premature discontinuation of study participants from clinical trials or missing data;
 
   
failure to manufacture or release sufficient quantities of our product candidates or failure to obtain sufficient quantities of active comparator medications for our clinical trials, if applicable, that in each case meet our quality standards, for use in clinical trials;
 
   
inability to monitor patients adequately during or after treatment; or
 
   
inappropriate unblinding of trial results.
In addition, disruptions caused by the
COVID-19
pandemic may increase the likelihood that we encounter such difficulties or delays in initiating, enrolling, conducting or completing our planned and ongoing clinical trials. Further, we, the FDA or other regulatory authorities may suspend our clinical trials in an entire country at any time, or an IRB/EC may suspend our clinical trial sites within any country, if it appears that we or our collaborators are failing to conduct a trial in accordance with the protocol, applicable regulatory requirements, including Good Clinical Practice (“GCP”) regulations, that we are exposing participants to unacceptable health risks, or if the FDA or other regulatory authority finds deficiencies in our IND or equivalent applications for other countries or in the manner in which clinical trials are conducted. Therefore, we cannot predict with any certainty the schedule for commencement and completion of future clinical trials.
 
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If we experience delays in the commencement or completion of our clinical trials, or if we terminate a clinical trial prior to completion, the commercial prospects of our product candidates could be harmed, and our ability to generate product revenue from any of our product candidates, if approved, may be delayed. In addition, any delays in our clinical trials could increase our costs, cause a decline in our share price, slow down the approval process, and jeopardize our ability to commence product sales and generate revenue. Any of these occurrences may harm our business, financial condition and results of operations. In addition, many of the factors that cause or lead to a termination or suspension of, or delay in the commencement or completion of clinical trials may also ultimately lead to the denial of regulatory approval of our product candidates. We may make formulation or manufacturing changes to our product candidates, in which case we may need to conduct additional preclinical or clinical studies to bridge our modified product candidates to earlier versions. Any delays to our clinical trials that occur as a result could shorten any period during which we may have the exclusive right to commercialize our product candidates and our competitors may be able to bring product candidates to market before we do, and the commercial viability of our product candidates could be significantly reduced.
Moreover, principal investigators for our clinical trials may serve as scientific advisors or consultants to us from time to time and receive compensation in connection with such services. Under certain circumstances, we may be required to report some of these relationships to the FDA or other regulatory authorities. The FDA or other regulatory authorities may conclude that a financial relationship between us and a principal investigator has created a conflict of interest or otherwise affected the integrity of the study. The FDA or other regulatory authorities may therefore question the integrity of the data generated at the applicable clinical trial site and the utility of the clinical trial itself may be jeopardized. This could result in a delay in approval, or rejection, of our marketing and authorization applications by the FDA or other regulatory authorities, as the case may be, and may ultimately lead to the denial of marketing approval of any of our product candidates.
In addition, for our products or product candidates that are in clinical development, prior to our acquisition of the rights to those products or product candidates we had no involvement with or control over the preclinical or clinical development of those products or product candidates. We are therefore dependent on our licensing and other transaction partners having conducted such research and development in accordance with the applicable protocols and legal, regulatory and scientific standards, having accurately reported the results of all clinical trials and other research they conducted prior to our acquisition of the rights to those products or product candidates, having correctly collected and interpreted the data from these trials and other research and having supplied us with complete information, data sets and reports required to adequately demonstrate the results reported through the date of our acquisition of these products or product candidates. Problems associated with the
pre-acquisition
development of our products or product candidates could result in increased costs and delays in the commercialization of our products or development of our product candidates, which could harm our ability to generate any future revenue from sales of products or, if approved, product candidates.
Our approach to the discovery and development of product candidates from our
small molecule discovery engine
is unproven, which makes it difficult to predict the time, cost of development and likelihood of successfully developing any product candidates from this platform.
Treating diseases using targeted protein degradation, covalency and similar approach is novel and unproven. Our future success depends in part on the successful development of these new therapeutic approaches. Very few small molecule product candidates using targeted protein degradation or covalency have been tested in humans. Only a limited number of product candidates using targeted protein degradation or covalency have been approved in the United States or Europe and the data underlying the feasibility of developing these types of therapeutic products remains both preliminary and limited. If any adverse learnings are made by other developers of protein degraders or covalent inhibitors, development of these product candidates could be materially impacted, which could in turn adversely impact our financial condition and future growth.
The scientific research that forms the basis of our efforts to develop product candidates from our small molecule discovery engine is ongoing and the scientific evidence to support the feasibility of developing these
 
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treatments is both preliminary and limited. In addition, we may be unable to replicate the scientific evidence supporting these product candidates observed by our academic collaborators in commercial laboratories.
Further, certain cancer patients have shown inherent primary resistance to approved drugs that inhibit disease-causing proteins and other patients have developed acquired secondary resistance to these inhibitors. Although we believe our product candidates may have the ability to degrade the specific mutations that confer resistance to currently marketed inhibitors of disease-causing enzymes, any inherent primary or acquired secondary resistance to our product candidates in patients, or if the research proves to be contradicted, would prevent or diminish their clinical benefit.
We have not yet completed
IND-enabling
work for, or initiated a clinical trial of, any product candidate associated with our small molecule discovery engine and we have not yet assessed the safety of any of these product candidates in humans. Although some of our product candidates have produced observable results in animal studies, there is a limited safety data set for their effects in animals. In addition, these product candidates may not demonstrate the same chemical and pharmacological properties in humans and may interact with human biological systems in unforeseen, ineffective or harmful ways. As a result, there could be adverse effects from treatment with any of our current or future products or product candidates that we cannot predict at this time.
Additionally, the regulatory approval process for novel product candidates such as those associated with our small molecule discovery engine is uncertain and can be more expensive and take longer than for other, better-known or extensively studied classes of product candidates. Although other companies are also developing therapeutics based on targeted protein degradation and similar approaches, only a limited number of product candidates of this type have been approved in the United States or Europe. As a result, it is difficult for us to predict the time and cost of developing our product candidates and we cannot predict whether any of our product candidates will receive marketing approval or achieve commercial acceptance. Any development problems we experience in the future related to our small molecule discovery engine or any of our related research programs may cause significant delays or unanticipated costs or may prevent the development of a commercially viable product. Any of these factors may prevent us from completing our preclinical studies or any clinical trials that we may initiate, as well as from commercializing any product candidates we may develop on a timely or profitable basis, if at all.
Certain of our products and product candidates are novel, complex and difficult to manufacture. We could experience manufacturing problems that result in delays in our development or commercialization programs or otherwise harm our business.
The manufacturing processes our CMOs use to produce our products and product candidates are complex, novel and, in the case of our product candidates, have not necessarily been validated for commercial use. Several factors could cause production interruptions, including equipment malfunctions, facility contamination, raw material shortages or contamination, natural disasters, disruption in utility services, human error or disruptions in the operations of our suppliers.
Our biologic product candidates may require processing steps that are more complex than those required for most small molecule drugs. Moreover, unlike small molecules, the physical and chemical properties of biologics generally cannot be fully characterized. As a result, assays of the finished product may not be sufficient to ensure that the product is consistent from
lot-to-lot
or will perform in the intended manner. Accordingly, our CMOs must employ multiple steps to control the manufacturing process to assure that the process is reproducible and the product candidate is made strictly and consistently in compliance with the process. Problems with the manufacturing process, even minor deviations from the normal process, could result in product defects or manufacturing failures that result in lot failures, product recalls, product liability claims or insufficient inventory to conduct clinical trials or supply commercial markets. We may encounter problems achieving adequate quantities and quality of clinical-grade materials that meet the FDA, the EU or other applicable standards or specifications with consistent and acceptable production yields and costs.
 
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In addition, the FDA, the EMA and other regulatory authorities may require us to submit samples of any lot of any approved product together with the protocols showing the results of applicable tests at any time. Under some circumstances, the FDA, the EMA or other comparable regulatory authorities may require that we not distribute a lot until the agency authorizes its release. Slight deviations in the manufacturing process, including those affecting quality attributes and stability, may result in unacceptable changes in the product that could result in lot failures or product recalls. Lot failures or product recalls could cause us to delay product launches or clinical trials, which could be costly to us and otherwise harm our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
Our CMOs also may encounter problems hiring and retaining the experienced scientific, quality assurance, quality-control and manufacturing personnel needed to operate our manufacturing processes, which could result in delays in production or difficulties in maintaining compliance with applicable regulatory requirements. Any problems in our CMOs’ manufacturing processes or facilities could result in delays in planned clinical trials and increased costs, and could make us a less attractive collaborator for potential partners, including larger biopharmaceutical companies and academic research institutions, which could limit access to additional attractive development programs. Problems in any of our manufacturing processes could restrict our ability to meet potential future market demand for our products or to conduct clinical trials with our product candidates.
We may encounter difficulties enrolling and retaining patients in clinical trials, and clinical development activities could thereby be delayed or otherwise adversely affected.
We may encounter delays or difficulties in enrolling, or be unable to enroll, a sufficient number of patients to complete any of our clinical trials for our products or product candidates on current timelines, or at all, and even once enrolled we may be unable to retain a sufficient number of patients to complete any of our clinical trials for these products or product candidates. Enrollment in our clinical trials may also be slower than we anticipate, or be stopped, leading to delays in the development timelines for our products and product candidates.
Patient enrollment and retention in clinical trials depends on many factors, including the size of the patient population, the nature of the trial protocol, our ability to recruit clinical trial investigators with the appropriate competencies and experience, delays in enrollment due to travel or quarantine policies, or other factors, related to
COVID-19,
the existing body of safety and efficacy data with respect to the study drug, the number and nature of competing treatments and ongoing clinical trials of competing drugs for the same indication, the proximity of patients to clinical sites, the eligibility criteria for the trial and the proportion of patients screened that meets those criteria, our ability to obtain and maintain patient consents and our ability to successfully complete prerequisite studies before enrolling certain patient populations. For certain of our products and product candidates, including batoclimab, which targets certain rare autoimmune indications, there are limited patient pools from which to draw in order to complete our clinical trials in a timely and cost-effective manner. In addition, for certain of our early-stage development programs, there may be a limited number of sites where it is feasible to run clinical trials, making such programs particularly susceptible to delays caused by issues at those sites.
Furthermore, any negative results or new safety signals we may report in clinical trials of our products or product candidates may make it difficult or impossible to recruit and retain patients in other clinical trials we are conducting or to resume enrolling patients once a paused clinical trial has been resumed. For example, in February 2021, our subsidiary, Immunovant, voluntarily paused dosing in its clinical trials for batoclimab globally due to elevated total cholesterol and
low-density
lipoprotein (“LDL”) levels observed in some patients treated with batoclimab, resulting in a delay in Immunovant’s development of batoclimab. In current and future trials of batoclimab, it may be more difficult for Immunovant to recruit and retain patients for such clinical trials. Similarly, negative results reported by our competitors about their drug candidates may negatively affect patient recruitment in our clinical trials. Also, marketing authorization of competitors in this same class of drugs may impair our ability to enroll patients into our clinical trials, delaying or potentially preventing us from completing recruitment of one or more of our trials.
 
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Delays or failures in planned patient enrollment or retention may result in increased costs, program delays or both, which could have a harmful effect on our ability to develop our products and product candidates, or could render further development impracticable. In addition, we expect to rely on CROs and clinical trial sites to ensure proper and timely conduct of our future clinical trials, and, while we intend to enter into agreements governing their services, we will be limited in our ability to compel their actual performance. Any such delays in our current or future clinical trials could have a material adverse impact on our operations and financial condition and results.
The results of our clinical trials may not support our proposed claims for our products or product candidates, or regulatory approvals on a timely basis or at all, and the results of earlier studies and trials may not be predictive of future trial results.
Success in preclinical testing and early clinical trials does not ensure that later clinical trials will be successful, and we cannot be sure that the results of later clinical trials will replicate the results of prior preclinical studies and earlier clinical trials. For example, we cannot assure you that the reductions in IgG antibodies that we have observed to date in our clinical trials of batoclimab will be observed in any future clinical trials. Likewise, promising interim results or other preliminary analyses do not ensure that the clinical trial as a whole will be successful and may lack statistical significance, which would further limit the reliability of such interim or preliminary data. A number of companies in the pharmaceutical industry, including biotechnology companies, have suffered significant setbacks in, or the discontinuation of, clinical trials, even after promising results were seen with their product candidates in earlier preclinical studies or clinical trials. These setbacks have been caused by, among other things, preclinical findings made while clinical trials were underway and safety or efficacy observations made in clinical trials, including previously unobserved adverse events.
As previously disclosed, our subsidiary, Immunovant, voluntarily paused dosing in its early phase clinical studies to evaluate batoclimab-induced elevations in total cholesterol and LDL levels observed in some trial subjects. In December 2021, Immunovant achieved alignment with the FDA Division of Neurology 1 to move forward with its pivotal study of batoclimab as treatment for myasthenia gravis (“MG”) and initiated its Phase 3 trial in MG in June 2022. Following expected discussions with the FDA Division of Hematology, Immunovant intends to initiate a randomized, placebo-controlled study of batoclimab as treatment for warm autoimmune hemolytic anemia (“WAIHA”). In addition, Immunovant recently achieved alignment with the FDA Division of Ophthalmology to move forward in thyroid eye disease (“TED”). It plans to initiate its pivotal program for batoclimab in TED in calendar year 2022. Immunovant continues to evaluate potential new indications for batoclimab and plans to announce two new indications by August 2022. Immunovant expects one of its three indications beyond MG and TED to be initiated as a pivotal study in calendar year 2022. Failure to successfully complete or replicate clinical trials of batoclimab and to demonstrate the efficacy and safety necessary to obtain regulatory approval to market batoclimab would significantly harm our business.
The results of preclinical studies and early clinical trials of our products and product candidates may not be predictive of the results of later-stage clinical trials. Products and product candidates in later stage clinical trials may fail to show the desired safety and efficacy traits despite having progressed through preclinical and initial clinical trials. A future failure of a clinical trial to meet its
pre-specified
endpoints may cause us to abandon development of the product candidate in question. Any delay in, or termination of, our clinical trials will prevent or delay the submission of an NDA or other similar applications to the FDA or other relevant comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities and, ultimately, our ability to commercialize our products or, if approved, our product candidates, and generate product revenues. Even if our clinical trials are completed as planned, we cannot be certain that their results will support our claims for differentiation or the effectiveness or safety of our products and product candidates. The FDA has substantial discretion in the review and approval process and may disagree that our data support the differentiated claims we propose. In addition, only a small percentage of product candidates under development result in the submission of an NDA or other similar application to the FDA and other comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities and even fewer are approved for commercialization.
 
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Interim,
top-line
or preliminary data from our clinical trials that we announce or publish from time to time may change as more patient data become available and are subject to audit and verification procedures that could result in material changes in the final data.
From time to time, and in some countries, in line with the applicable requirements set out in legislation and guidance, we may publicly disclose preliminary or
top-line
data from our clinical trials, which is based on a preliminary analysis of then-available
top-line
data. These results and related findings and conclusions are subject to change following a full analysis of all data related to the particular trial. We also make assumptions, estimations, calculations and conclusions as part of our analyses of data, and we may not have received or had the opportunity to fully and carefully evaluate all data. As a result, the preliminary and
top-line
results that we report may differ from future results of the same trials, or different conclusions or considerations may qualify such results, once additional data have been received and fully evaluated.
Top-line
data also remain subject to audit and verification procedures that may result in the final data being materially different from the
top-line
data we previously reported. As a result, preliminary and
top-line
data should be viewed with caution until the final data are available. From time to time, we may also disclose interim data from our clinical trials. Interim data from clinical trials that we may complete are subject to the risk that one or more of the clinical outcomes may materially change as patient enrollment continues and more patient data become available. Adverse differences between preliminary,
top-line
or interim data and final data could significantly harm our business prospects. Further, disclosure of preliminary or interim data by us or by our competitors could result in increased volatility in the price of our shares.
Further, other parties, including regulatory agencies, may not accept or agree with our assumptions, estimates, calculations, conclusions or analyses or may interpret or weigh the importance of data differently, which could impact the value of the particular program, the approvability or commercialization of a particular product or product candidate and our business in general. In addition, the information we choose or are required to publicly disclose regarding a particular study or clinical trial is based on what is typically extensive information, and you or others may not agree with what we determine is the material or otherwise appropriate information to include in our disclosure. Any information we determine not to disclose may ultimately be deemed significant with respect to future decisions, conclusions, views, activities or otherwise regarding a particular product, product candidate or our business. If the
top-line
data that we report differ from actual results, or if others, including regulatory authorities, disagree with the conclusions reached, our ability to obtain approval for and commercialize our products and product candidates, our business, operating results, prospects or financial condition may be harmed.
Changes in methods of product manufacturing or formulation may result in additional costs or delay.
As our products and product candidates proceed through the development process, it is common that various aspects of the development program, such as manufacturing methods and formulation, are altered along the way in an effort to optimize processes and results. Such changes carry the risk that they will not achieve these intended objectives. Any of these changes could cause products or product candidates to perform differently and affect the results of planned clinical trials or other future clinical trials conducted with the altered materials. Such changes may also require additional testing, FDA notification or FDA approval. Similar requirements apply in other jurisdictions. This could delay the completion, or result in the abandonment, of clinical trials, require the conduct of bridging clinical trials, the repetition of one or more clinical trials, increase clinical trial costs, delay approval of our products and product candidates and jeopardize our ability to commence sales and generate revenues.
We rely on third parties to conduct, supervise and monitor our clinical trials, and if those third parties perform in an unsatisfactory manner or fail to comply with applicable requirements, it may harm our business.
We rely on CROs and clinical trial sites to ensure the proper and timely conduct of our clinical trials, and we expect to have limited influence over their actual performance. In addition, we rely upon CROs to monitor
 
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and manage data for our clinical programs, as well as the execution of future nonclinical studies. We expect to control only certain aspects of our CROs’ activities. Nevertheless, we will be responsible for ensuring that each of our studies is conducted in accordance with the applicable contract, protocol, legal, regulatory and scientific standards and that clinical trial sites meet applicable protocol and regulatory requirements. Our reliance on CROs does not relieve us of our regulatory or specified contractual responsibilities.
We and our CROs are required to comply with Good Laboratory Practices (“GLPs”) and GCPs, which are regulations and guidelines enforced by the FDA and other comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities, which also require compliance with the International Council for Harmonization of Technical Requirements for Pharmaceuticals for Human Use (“ICH”) guidelines for any of our products and product candidates that are in preclinical and clinical development. The regulatory authorities enforce GCP regulations through periodic inspections of trial sponsors, principal investigators and clinical trial sites. Although we may rely on CROs to conduct our
GLP-compliant
nonclinical studies and
GCP-compliant
clinical trials, we remain responsible for ensuring that each of our GLP nonclinical studies and GCP clinical trials is conducted in accordance with its investigational plan and protocol and applicable laws and regulations. Our expected reliance on the CROs does not relieve us of our regulatory responsibilities. If we or our CROs fail to comply with GCPs, the clinical data generated in our clinical trials may be deemed unreliable and the FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities may reject our marketing authorization applications and require us to perform additional clinical trials before approving our marketing applications. Accordingly, if our CROs fail to comply with these regulations or other applicable laws, regulations or standards, or fail to recruit a sufficient number of subjects, we may be required to repeat clinical trials, which would delay the regulatory approval process. Failure by any future CROs to properly execute study protocols in accordance with applicable law could also create product liability and healthcare regulatory risks for us as sponsors of those studies.
Our CROs are independent, third-party organizations and we do not control whether they devote sufficient time, attention and resources to our clinical and nonclinical programs. These CROs may also have relationships with other commercial entities, including our competitors, for whom they may also be conducting clinical trials, or other drug development activities which could harm our competitive position. We face the risk of potential unauthorized disclosure or infringement, misappropriation or other violation of our intellectual property by CROs, which may reduce our trade secret and intellectual property protection and allow our potential competitors to access and exploit our proprietary technology. If our CROs do not successfully carry out their contractual duties or obligations, fail to meet expected deadlines, or if the quality or accuracy of the clinical data they obtain is compromised due to the failure to adhere to our clinical protocols or regulatory requirements or for any other reasons, our clinical trials may be extended, delayed or terminated, and we may not be able to obtain regulatory approval for, or successfully commercialize any product or product candidate that we develop. As a result, our financial results and the commercial prospects for any product or product candidate that we develop would be harmed, our costs could increase, and our ability to generate revenues could be delayed.
If our relationships with these CROs terminate, we may not be able to enter into arrangements with alternative CROs or do so on commercially reasonable terms or in a timely manner. Switching or adding additional CROs involves substantial cost and requires management time and focus. In addition, there is a natural transition period when a new CRO commences work. As a result, delays occur, which can adversely impact our ability to meet our desired clinical development timelines. Though we intend to carefully manage our relationships with the CROs, there can be no assurance that we will not encounter challenges or delays in the future or that these delays or challenges will not have an adverse impact on our business, financial condition and prospects.
We do not have our own manufacturing capabilities and rely on third parties to produce clinical and commercial supplies of our products and product candidates.
We do not own or operate, and do not expect to own or operate, facilities for product manufacturing, storage and distribution or testing. Accordingly, we rely on third parties to produce commercial and clinical supplies of
 
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our products and product candidates. For example, Dermavant and GSK have entered into manufacturing and supply agreements pursuant to which GSK is providing both commercial drug product and drug substance for VTAMA as well as drug product and drug substance for Dermavant’s ongoing Phase III clinical trial of VTAMA in atopic dermatitis. If GSK does not fulfill its obligations under these agreements, Dermavant’s ability to sell VTAMA commercially and conduct its ongoing and future clinical trials with VTAMA may be adversely impacted.
Third-party vendors may be difficult to identify for our product process and formulation development and manufacturing due to special capabilities required, and they may not be able to meet our quality standards. In addition, certain of our third-party manufacturers and suppliers may encounter delays in providing their services as a result of supply chain constraints. If any third-party manufacturers or third parties in the supply chain for materials used in the production of our products or product candidates are adversely impacted by supply chain constraints, our supply chain may be disrupted, limiting our ability to manufacture our products for commercialization and products or product candidates for our preclinical studies, clinical trials and research and development activities. Any significant delay in the supply of a product or product candidate, or the raw material components thereof, for either commercialization or an ongoing clinical trial, due to the need to replace a third-party manufacturer or otherwise, could considerably delay marketing efforts for the product in question or the completion of clinical trials, product testing and potential regulatory approval of the product candidate in question. If our manufacturers or we are unable to purchase these raw materials after regulatory approval has been obtained for our products or product candidates, the commercial launch of our products or product candidates would be delayed or there would be a shortage in supply, which would impair our ability to generate revenue from the sale of our products or product candidates and may require notification to the FDA or other regulatory authorities. Moreover, as a result of projected supply constraints for certain materials used in the production of our products or product candidates, we have in the past and may in the future reserve manufacturing capacity in advance of receiving required efficacy or safety results from our clinical trials, which may involve committing substantial financial resources to current or future products or product candidates that may never be approved or achieve commercialization at scale or at all. In addition, legislative, executive and regulatory proposals are pending to, among other things, prevent drug shortages, improve pandemic preparedness and reduce the dependency of the United States on foreign supply chains and manufacturing. While we are still assessing these developments, they could impact our selection and utilization of CMOs, vendors and other suppliers and could have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
The facilities used by our contract manufacturers to manufacture our products and product candidates must be approved by the FDA pursuant to inspections that will be conducted after we submit an NDA or other similar application to the FDA. Such facilities must also register with the FDA. Similar requirements apply in other jurisdictions. We do not control the manufacturing process of, and are completely dependent on, our contract manufacturing partners for compliance with Current Good Manufacturing Practice (“cGMP”) requirements for the manufacture of products and product candidates. If our contract manufacturers cannot successfully manufacture material that conforms to our specifications and the strict regulatory requirements of the FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities, we will not be able to secure or maintain regulatory approval for our products or product candidates. In addition, we have limited control over the ability of our contract manufacturers to maintain adequate quality control, quality assurance and qualified personnel. If the FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities do not approve these facilities for the manufacture of our products or product candidates or if they withdraw any such approval in the future, we may need to find alternative manufacturing facilities, which would significantly impact our ability to market our products and develop, obtain regulatory approval for or market our product candidates, if approved.
Further, our reliance on third-party manufacturers entails risks to which we would not be subject if we manufactured our products and product candidates ourselves, including:
 
   
inability to meet our product specifications and quality requirements consistently;
 
   
delay or inability to procure or expand sufficient manufacturing capacity;
 
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manufacturing and product quality issues related to
scale-up
of manufacturing;
 
   
costs and validation of new equipment and facilities required for
scale-up;
 
   
failure to comply with applicable laws, regulations and standards, including cGMP and similar standards;
 
   
deficient or improper record-keeping;
 
   
inability to negotiate manufacturing agreements with third parties under commercially reasonable terms;
 
   
termination or nonrenewal of manufacturing agreements with third parties in a manner or at a time that is costly or damaging to us;
 
   
reliance on a limited number of sources, and in some cases, single sources for product components, such that if we are unable to secure a sufficient supply of these product components, we will be unable to manufacture and sell our products or product candidates in a timely fashion, in sufficient quantities or under acceptable terms;
 
   
lack of qualified backup suppliers for those components that are currently purchased from a sole or single source supplier;
 
   
operations of our third-party manufacturers or suppliers could be disrupted by conditions unrelated to our business or operations, including the bankruptcy of the manufacturer or supplier or other regulatory sanctions related to the manufacturer of another company’s product candidates;
 
   
carrier disruptions or increased costs that are beyond our control; and
 
   
failure to deliver our products or product candidates under specified storage conditions and in a timely manner.
Any of these events could lead to clinical trial delays, cost overruns, delay or failure to obtain regulatory approval or impact our ability to successfully commercialize our products and product candidates as well as potential product liability litigation, product recalls or product withdrawals. Some of these events could be the basis for FDA or other regulatory authority action, including injunction, recall, seizure, total or partial suspension of production, or suspension or revocation of manufacturing/import authorizations and GMP certificates.
If the contract manufacturing facilities on which we rely do not continue to meet regulatory requirements or are unable to meet our requirements, including providing an adequate supply, our business will be harmed.
All entities involved in the preparation of products and product candidates for clinical trials or commercial sale, including our existing CMOs for all of our products and product candidates, are subject to extensive regulation. Components of a finished therapeutic product approved for commercial sale or used in late-stage clinical trials must be manufactured in accordance with cGMP, or similar regulatory requirements outside the United States. These regulations govern manufacturing processes and procedures, including record-keeping, and the implementation and operation of quality systems to control and assure the quality of investigational products and products approved for sale. Poor control of production processes can lead to the introduction of contaminants or to inadvertent changes in the properties or stability of our products and product candidates. Our failure, or the failure of third-party manufacturers, to comply with applicable regulations could result in the issuance of inspectional observations on FDA’s
Form-483,
Warning or Untitled Letters, similar communications or objections by other authorities, public safety alerts identifying our company or products and sanctions being imposed on us, including clinical holds, import alerts, fines, injunctions, civil penalties, delays, suspension or withdrawal of approvals, license revocation, suspension of production, seizures or recalls of products or product candidates, operating restrictions and criminal prosecutions, any of which could significantly and adversely affect clinical or commercial supplies of our products and product candidates.
 
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We and/or our CMOs must supply all necessary documentation in support of an NDA or similar regulatory application on a timely basis, and must adhere to regulations enforced by the FDA and other regulatory agencies through their facilities inspection program. Some of our CMOs have never produced a commercially approved pharmaceutical product and therefore have not obtained the requisite regulatory authority approvals to do so. The facilities and quality systems of some or all of our third-party contractors must pass a
pre-approval
inspection for compliance with the applicable regulations as a condition of regulatory approval of our products and product candidates. In addition, the regulatory authorities may, at any time, audit or inspect a manufacturing facility involved with the preparation of our products and product candidates or the associated quality systems for compliance with the regulations applicable to the activities being conducted. Although we oversee the CMOs, we cannot control the manufacturing process of, and are completely dependent on, our CMO partners for compliance with the regulatory requirements. If these facilities do not pass a
pre-approval
plant inspection, regulatory approval of the products and product candidates may not be granted or may be substantially delayed until any violations are corrected to the satisfaction of the regulatory authority, if ever.
The regulatory authorities also may, at any time following approval of a product for sale, inspect the manufacturing facilities of our third-party contractors. If any such inspection or audit identifies a failure to comply with applicable regulations or if a violation of our product specifications or applicable regulations occurs independent of such an inspection or audit, we or the relevant regulatory authority may require remedial measures that may be costly and/or time consuming for us or a third-party to implement, and that may include the temporary or permanent suspension of a clinical trial or commercial sales or the temporary or permanent closure of a facility. Any such remedial measures imposed upon us or third parties with whom we contract could materially harm our business.
Additionally, if supply from one approved manufacturer is interrupted, an alternative manufacturer would need to be qualified through a supplemental NDA or similar regulatory filing, which could result in further delay. The regulatory agencies may also require additional studies if a new manufacturer is relied upon for commercial production. In some cases, the technical skills required to manufacture our products and product candidates may be unique or proprietary to the original CMO and we may have difficulty, or there may be contractual restrictions prohibiting us from, transferring such skills to a
back-up
or alternate supplier, or we may be unable to transfer such skills at all. In addition, if we are required to change CMOs for any reason, we will be required to verify that the new CMO maintains facilities and procedures that comply with quality standards and with all applicable regulations. We will also need to verify, such as through a manufacturing comparability study, that any new manufacturing process will produce our product or product candidate according to the specifications previously submitted to the FDA or another regulatory authority. The delays associated with the verification of a new CMO could negatively affect our ability to develop product candidates or commercialize our products in a timely manner or within budget. In addition, changes in manufacturers often involve changes in manufacturing procedures and processes, which could require that we conduct bridging studies between our prior clinical supply used in our clinical trials and that of any new manufacturer. We may be unsuccessful in demonstrating the comparability of clinical supplies, which could require the conduct of additional clinical trials. Accordingly, switching manufacturers may involve substantial costs and is likely to result in a delay in our desired clinical and commercial timelines.
These factors could cause us to incur higher costs and could cause the delay or termination of clinical trials, regulatory submissions, required approvals, or commercialization of our products and product candidates. Furthermore, if our suppliers fail to meet contractual requirements and we are unable to secure one or more replacement suppliers capable of production at a substantially equivalent cost, our clinical trials may be delayed or we could lose potential revenue.
 
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Risks Related to Regulatory Approval and Commercialization of Our Products and Product Candidates
Obtaining approval of a new drug is an extensive, lengthy, expensive and inherently uncertain process, and the FDA or another regulator may delay, limit or deny approval. If we are unable to obtain regulatory approval in one or more jurisdictions for any products or product candidates, our business will be substantially harmed.
We cannot commercialize a product until the appropriate regulatory authorities have reviewed and approved the product candidate. Approval by the FDA and comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities is lengthy and unpredictable, and depends upon numerous factors, including substantial discretion of the regulatory authorities. Approval policies, regulations, or the type and amount of nonclinical or clinical data necessary to gain approval may change during the course of a product candidate’s development and may vary among jurisdictions, which may cause delays in the approval or the decision not to approve an application. While we have obtained regulatory approval in the U.S. for one of our product candidates, VTAMA, it is possible that other current and future product candidates will not be successful in obtaining regulatory approval. In addition, we cannot be certain that any products or product candidates that receive regulatory approval will be successfully commercialized.
Obtaining marketing approval of a new drug is an extensive, lengthy, expensive and inherently uncertain process and the FDA or other
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities may delay, limit or deny approval of a product candidate for many reasons, including:
 
   
we may not be able to demonstrate that a product candidate is safe and effective as a treatment for the targeted indications, and in the case of our product candidates regulated as biological products, that the product candidate is safe, pure and potent for use in its targeted indication, to the satisfaction of the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may require additional
pre-approval
studies or clinical trials, which would increase costs and prolong development timelines;
 
   
the results of clinical trials may not meet the level of statistical or clinical significance required by the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities for marketing approval;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may disagree with the number, design, size, conduct or implementation of clinical trials, including the design of proposed preclinical and early clinical trials of any future product candidates;
 
   
the CROs that we retain to conduct clinical trials may take actions outside of our control, or otherwise commit errors or breaches of protocols, that adversely impact the clinical trials and ability to obtain marketing approvals;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may not find the data from nonclinical, preclinical studies or clinical trials sufficient to demonstrate that the clinical and other benefits of a product candidate outweigh its safety risks;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may disagree with an interpretation of data or significance of results from nonclinical, preclinical studies or clinical trials or may require additional studies;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may not accept data generated at clinical trial sites;
 
   
if an NDA, BLA or a similar application is reviewed by an advisory committee, the FDA or other relevant regulatory authority, as the case may be, may have difficulties scheduling an advisory committee meeting in a timely manner or the advisory committee may recommend against approval of our application or may recommend that the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities, as the case may be, require, as a condition of approval, additional nonclinical, preclinical studies or clinical trials, limitations on approved labeling or distribution and use restrictions;
 
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the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may require development of a risk evaluation and mitigation strategy (“REMS”) or its equivalent, as a condition of approval;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may require additional post-marketing studies and/or patient registries for product candidates;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may find the chemistry, manufacturing and controls data insufficient to support the quality of our product candidates;
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may identify deficiencies in the manufacturing processes or facilities of third-party manufacturers; or
 
   
the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities may change their approval policies or adopt new regulations.
For example, the FDA launched Project Optimus in 2021 as an initiative to reform the dose optimization and dose selection paradigm in oncology drug development, which was driven by the FDA’s concerns that the current paradigm for dose selection may result in doses and schedules of molecularly targeted therapies that are inadequately characterized before initiating pivotal trials. Through collaboration with the biopharmaceutical industry, academia and other stakeholders, the FDA’s goal for this initiative is to advance an oncology dose-finding and dose optimization paradigm that emphasizes dose selections that maximize efficacy as well as safety and tolerability. In support of this initiative, the FDA may request sponsors of oncology product candidates to conduct dose optimization studies
pre-
or post-approval. The FDA also continues to develop and finalize guidance documents and implement initiatives regarding the development and clinical research of oncology product candidates.
Our future success depends significantly on our ability to successfully complete clinical trials for our product candidates, obtain regulatory approval and then successfully commercialize those product candidates. Any inability to successfully initiate, conduct or complete clinical trials could result in additional costs to us or impair our ability to generate revenue. In addition, if we make manufacturing or formulation changes to our product candidates, we may be required to or we may elect to conduct additional nonclinical studies or clinical trials to bridge data obtained from our modified product candidates to data obtained from nonclinical and clinical research conducted using earlier versions of these product candidates. Clinical trial delays could also shorten any periods during which our products have patent protection and may allow our competitors to bring products to market before we do, which could impair our ability to successfully commercialize product candidates and may harm our business and results of operations.
Delays in the initiation, conduct or completion of any clinical trial of our product candidates will increase our costs, slow down the product candidate development and approval process and delay or potentially jeopardize our ability to receive regulatory approvals, commence product sales and generate revenue. In addition, many of the factors that cause, or lead to, a delay in the commencement or completion of clinical trials may also ultimately lead to the denial of regulatory approval of our product candidates. Any of these events could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations and have a negative impact on the price of our Common Shares.
Our clinical trials may fail to demonstrate substantial evidence of the safety and efficacy of product candidates that we may identify and pursue for their intended uses, which would prevent, delay or limit the scope of regulatory approval and commercialization.
Before obtaining regulatory approvals for the commercial sale of any of our product candidates, we must demonstrate through lengthy, complex and expensive nonclinical studies, preclinical studies and clinical trials that the applicable product candidate is both safe and effective for use in each target indication, and in the case of our product candidates regulated as biological products, that the product candidate is safe, pure, and potent for use in its targeted indication. Each product candidate must demonstrate an adequate risk versus benefit profile in its intended patient population and for its intended use.
 
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Clinical testing is expensive and can take many years to complete, and its outcome is inherently uncertain. Failure can occur at any time during the clinical development process. Most product candidates that begin clinical trials are never approved by regulatory authorities for commercialization. We have limited experience in designing clinical trials and may be unable to design and execute a clinical trial to support additional marketing approvals.
We cannot be certain that our current clinical trials or any other future clinical trials will be successful. Additionally, any safety concerns observed in any one of our clinical trials in our targeted indications could limit the prospects for regulatory approval of our product candidates in those and other indications, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. In addition, even if such clinical trials are successfully completed, we cannot guarantee that the FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities will interpret the results as we do, and more trials could be required before we submit our product candidates for approval. Moreover, results acceptable to support approval in one jurisdiction may be deemed inadequate by another regulatory authority to support regulatory approval in that other jurisdiction. To the extent that the results of the trials are not satisfactory to the FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities for support of a marketing application, we may be required to expend significant resources, which may not be available to us, to conduct additional trials in support of potential approval of our product candidates. Even when regulatory approval is secured for a product or product candidate, the terms of such approval may limit the scope and use of the specific product candidate, which may also limit its commercial potential.
Our products and product candidates may cause adverse effects or have other properties that could delay or prevent their regulatory approval, cause us to suspend or discontinue clinical trials, abandon further development or limit the scope of any approved label or market acceptance.
Adverse events caused by or associated with our products and product candidates have caused us and could, in the future, cause us, other reviewing entities, clinical trial sites or regulatory authorities to interrupt, delay or halt clinical trials and could result in the denial of regulatory approval. If an unacceptable frequency or severity of adverse events or new safety signals are reported in our clinical trials for our product candidates or any future product candidates, our ability to obtain regulatory approval for such product candidates may be negatively impacted. Treatment-related side effects arising from, or those perceived to arise from, our product candidates or those from other companies targeting similar diseases, could also affect patient recruitment or the ability of enrolled patients to complete their participation in our clinical trials or result in potential product liability claims. In addition, these side effects may not be appropriately recognized or managed by the treating medical staff. For example, as previously disclosed, our subsidiary Immunovant voluntarily paused dosing in early phase clinical studies for batoclimab globally to evaluate batoclimab-induced elevations in total cholesterol and LDL levels observed in some trial subjects. After evaluation of the available safety data and following discussions with multiple regulatory agencies, Immunovant is continuing its clinical development of batoclimab. While Immunovant does not expect that increases in LDL over a short-term treatment duration would pose a safety concern for patients, the risk-benefit profile of long-term administration of batoclimab will need to incorporate any unfavorable effects on lipid profiles. These occurrences have harmed, and any reoccurrence may continue to harm our business, financial condition and prospects.
Furthermore, if any of our products, or any future product candidates that are approved, cause serious or unexpected side effects, a number of potentially significant negative consequences could result, including:
 
   
regulatory authorities may withdraw, suspend, vary, or limit their approval of the product or require a REMS (or equivalent outside the United States) to impose restrictions on its distribution or other risk management measures;
 
   
regulatory authorities may require that we recall a product;
 
   
additional restrictions being imposed on the distribution, marketing or manufacturing processes of the products or any components thereof, including a “black box” warning or contraindication on product labels or communications containing warnings or other safety information about the product;
 
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regulatory authorities may require the addition of labeling statements, such as warnings or contraindications, require other labeling changes of a product or require field alerts or other communications to physicians, pharmacies or the public;
 
   
we may be required to change the way a product is administered or distributed, conduct additional clinical trials, change the labeling of a product or conduct additional post-marketing studies or surveillance;
 
   
we may be required to repeat preclinical studies or clinical trials or terminate programs for a product candidate, even if other studies or trials related to the program are ongoing or have been successfully completed;
 
   
we may be sued and held liable for harm caused to patients, or may be subject to fines, restitution or disgorgement of profits or revenues;
 
   
physicians may stop prescribing a product;
 
   
reimbursement may not be available for a product;
 
   
we may elect to discontinue the sale of our products;
 
   
our products may become less competitive; and
 
   
our reputation may suffer.
Any of these events could prevent us from achieving or maintaining market acceptance of the affected products or product candidates, substantially increase the costs of commercializing our products or product candidates in the future and have a negative impact on the price of our Common Shares.
The regulatory approval processes of the FDA and comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities are lengthy, time consuming and inherently unpredictable, and gaining approval for a product candidate in one country or jurisdiction does not guarantee that we will be able to obtain approval for or commercialize it in any other jurisdiction, which would limit our ability to realize our full market potential.
Prior to obtaining approval to commercialize a product candidate in any jurisdiction, we or our collaborators must demonstrate with substantial evidence from well-controlled clinical trials, and to the satisfaction of the FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities, that such product candidate is safe and effective and, as applicable, pure and potent for its intended use. Results from nonclinical studies and clinical trials can be interpreted in different ways. Even if we believe the nonclinical or clinical data for a product candidate are promising, such data may not be sufficient to support approval by the FDA and other regulatory authorities. In order to market any products in any particular jurisdiction, we must establish and comply with numerous and varying regulatory requirements on a
country-by-country
basis regarding safety and efficacy. Approval of a product candidate by the FDA does not ensure approval by regulatory authorities in any other country or jurisdiction outside the United States. In addition, clinical trials conducted in one country may not be accepted by regulatory authorities in other countries, and regulatory approval in one country does not guarantee regulatory approval in any other country. Approval processes vary among countries and can involve additional product testing and validation, as well as additional administrative review periods. Seeking regulatory approval could result in difficulties and costs for us and require additional nonclinical studies or clinical trials, which could be costly and time consuming. Regulatory requirements can vary widely from country to country and could delay or prevent the introduction of our products in those countries. We have one product, VTAMA, which has been approved by the FDA for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adults in the U.S., but do not have any other products approved for sale in the U.S. or any other jurisdiction, including in international markets, and we do not have significant experience in obtaining regulatory approval in other markets. If we fail to comply with regulatory requirements in international markets or to obtain and maintain required approvals, or if regulatory approvals in international markets are delayed, our target market will be reduced and our ability to realize the full market potential of any product we develop will be unrealized.
 
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FDA approval for a product candidate in the United States does not guarantee that we will be able to or that we will make efforts to obtain approval for or commercialize our product candidates in any other jurisdiction, which would limit our ability to realize the drug candidate’s full market potential.
We have one product, VTAMA, approved by the FDA for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adults in the U.S. In order to market VTAMA or any of our other products or product candidates outside of the United States, we must establish and comply with numerous and varying regulatory requirements of other countries regarding safety and effectiveness. Clinical trials conducted in one country may not be accepted by regulatory authorities in other countries, and regulatory approval in one country does not mean that regulatory approval will be obtained in any other country. Approval processes vary among countries and can involve additional product testing and validation and additional or different administrative review periods from those in the United States, including additional preclinical studies or clinical trials, as clinical trials conducted in one jurisdiction may not be accepted by regulatory authorities in other jurisdictions. In many jurisdictions outside the United States, a product candidate must be approved for reimbursement before it can be sold in that jurisdiction. In some cases, the price that we intend to charge for our products is also subject to approval.
Seeking regulatory approval outside of the United States could result in difficulties and costs and require additional nonclinical studies or clinical trials which could be costly and time-consuming. Regulatory requirements can vary widely from country to country and could delay or prevent the introduction of our product candidates in those countries. The regulatory approval process outside of the United States may include all of the risks associated with obtaining FDA approval. Other than VTAMA, we do not have any products or product candidates approved for sale in any jurisdiction, including international markets, and we do not have significant experience in obtaining regulatory approval in international markets. If we fail to comply with regulatory requirements in international markets or to obtain and maintain required approvals, or if regulatory approval in international markets is delayed, our target market will be reduced and our ability to realize the full market potential of our products will be harmed.
Following regulatory approvals for our products and product candidates, we will continue to face extensive ongoing quality and regulatory obligations and continued regulatory review, which may result in significant additional expense, and our products may face future development and quality or regulatory compliance difficulties.
We have one product, VTAMA, approved by the FDA for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adults in the U.S. Any product or product candidate for which we obtain marketing approval will be subject to extensive and ongoing regulatory requirements, including for manufacturing processes, post-approval clinical data, labeling, packaging, distribution, adverse event reporting, storage, recordkeeping, traceability, conduct of potential post-marketing studies and post-marketing submission requirements, export, import, advertising and promotional activities for such product, among other things, will be subject to extensive and ongoing requirements of and review by the FDA and other regulatory authorities. These requirements include submissions of safety and other post-marketing information and reports, establishment of registration and drug listing requirements, continued compliance with cGMP requirements relating to manufacturing, quality control, quality assurance and corresponding maintenance of records and documents, requirements regarding the distribution of drug product samples to physicians, prior notification/review and/or approval of advertising and promotional materials by the competent authorities, record-keeping and GCP requirements for any clinical trials that we conduct post-approval. Even when marketing approval of a product or product candidate is granted, the approval may be subject to limitations on the indicated uses for which the product may be marketed or to the conditions of approval, including any requirement to implement a REMS. When a product or product candidate receives marketing approval, the accompanying label may limit the approved use of the drug or the FDA or other regulatory authorities may require that contraindications, warnings or precautions, including in some cases, a boxed warning, be included in the product labeling, which could limit sales of the product.
The FDA and other relevant regulatory authorities may also impose requirements for costly post-marketing studies or clinical trials and surveillance to monitor the safety or efficacy of a product. Failure to complete such
 
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post-marketing requirements in accordance with the timelines and conditions set forth by the FDA and other relevant regulatory authorities could significantly increase costs, result in regulatory enforcement, or delay, limit or ultimately restrict the commercialization of such product. The FDA and other relevant regulatory authorities closely regulate the post-approval marketing and promotion of drugs to ensure drugs are marketed only for the approved indications and in accordance with the provisions of the approved labeling and that promotional and advertising materials and communications are truthful and
non-misleading.
Although the FDA and other regulatory agencies do not regulate a physician’s choice of drug treatment made in the physician’s independent medical judgment, regulatory authorities impose stringent restrictions on manufacturers’ communications and if we do not market our products or product candidates for their approved indications or in a manner which regulators believe to be truthful and
non-misleading,
we may be subject to enforcement action. Moreover, in the EU we will be prohibited from promoting prescription-only medicinal products to individuals who are not healthcare professionals. Violations of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act in the United States and other comparable laws and regulations in other jurisdictions relating to the promotion of prescription drugs may lead to enforcement actions and investigations by the FDA, Department of Justice, State Attorneys General and other comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory agencies alleging violations of United States federal and state health care fraud and abuse laws, as well as state consumer protection laws and comparable laws in other jurisdictions.
In addition, later discovery of previously unknown adverse events or other problems with our products or product candidates, manufacturers or manufacturing processes, or failure to comply with regulatory requirements, may negatively impact our business and the price of our Common Shares and may yield various results, including:
 
   
restrictions on the manufacture of such products or product candidates;
 
   
restrictions on the labeling or marketing of such products or product candidates, including a “black box” warning or contraindication on the product label or communications containing warnings or other safety information about the product;
 
   
restrictions on product distribution or use;
 
   
requirements to conduct post-marketing studies or clinical trials, or any regulatory holds on our clinical trials;
 
   
requirement of a REMS (or equivalent outside the United States);
 
   
Warning or Untitled Letters or similar communications from other relevant regulatory authorities;
 
   
withdrawal of the product or product candidates from the market;
 
   
refusal to approve pending applications or supplements to approved applications that we submit;
 
   
recall of products or product candidates;
 
   
fines, restitution or disgorgement of profits or revenues;
 
   
suspension, variation or withdrawal of marketing approvals;
 
   
refusal to permit the import or export of our products or product candidates;
 
   
seizure of our products or product candidates; or
 
   
lawsuits, injunctions or the imposition of civil or criminal penalties.
Non-compliance
by us or any current or future collaborator with regulatory requirements, including safety monitoring or pharmacovigilance can also result in significant financial penalties.
 
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Our failure to maintain or continuously improve our quality management program could have an adverse effect upon our business, subject us to regulatory actions and cause patients to lose confidence in us or our products, among other negative consequences.
Quality management plays an essential role in the manufacturing of drugs or drug products, conducting clinical trials, preventing defects, improving our product candidates and services and assuring the safety and efficacy of our products and product candidates. We seek to maintain a robust quality management program which includes the following broad pillars of quality:
 
   
monitoring and assuring regulatory compliance for clinical trials, manufacturing and testing of good applicable practice (“GxP”) (e.g., GCP, GLP and GMP regulated) products;
 
   
monitoring and providing oversight of all GxP suppliers (e.g., contract development manufacturing organizations and CROs);
 
   
establishing and maintaining an integrated, robust quality management system for clinical, manufacturing, supply chain and distribution operations; and
 
   
cultivating a proactive, preventative quality culture and employee and supplier training to ensure quality.
Our future success depends on our ability to maintain and continuously improve our quality management program. A quality or safety issue may result in adverse inspection reports, warning letters, monetary sanctions, injunctions to halt manufacture and distribution of drugs or drug products, civil or criminal sanctions, costly litigation, refusal of a government to grant approvals and licenses, restrictions on operations or withdrawal, suspension or variation of existing approvals and licenses. An inability to address a quality or safety issue in an effective and timely manner may also cause negative publicity, or a loss of patient confidence in us or our products or product candidates, which may result in difficulty in successfully launching products and the loss of potential future sales, which could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition, and results of operations.
Breakthrough Therapy Designation, Fast Track Designation, Regenerative Medicine Advanced Therapy Designation or Orphan Drug Designation by the FDA or other relevant regulatory authorities, even if granted for any product candidate, may not lead to a faster development, regulatory review or approval process, and does not necessarily increase the likelihood that any product candidate will receive marketing approval in the United States or other jurisdictions.
We have sought, or may in the future seek, Breakthrough Therapy Designation, Fast Track Designation, Regenerative Medicine Advanced Therapy Designation or Orphan Drug Designation for certain of our product candidates.
A breakthrough therapy is defined as a therapy that is intended, alone or in combination with one or more other therapies, to treat a serious or life-threatening disease or condition, and preliminary clinical evidence indicates that the therapy may demonstrate substantial improvement over existing therapies on one or more clinically significant endpoints, such as substantial treatment effects observed early in clinical development. For therapies that have been designated as breakthrough therapies, interaction and communication between the FDA and the sponsor of the trial can help to identify the most efficient path for clinical development while minimizing the number of patients placed on potentially less efficacious control regimens. Therapies designated as breakthrough therapies by the FDA may also be eligible for priority review and accelerated approval. Designation as a breakthrough therapy is within the discretion of the FDA. Accordingly, even if we believe a product candidate meets the criteria for designation as a breakthrough therapy, the FDA may disagree and instead determine not to make such designation. In any event, the receipt of a Breakthrough Therapy Designation for a product candidate may not result in a faster development process, review or approval compared to therapies considered for approval under conventional FDA procedures and does not assure ultimate approval by the FDA.
 
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In addition, even if a product candidate qualifies as a breakthrough therapy, the FDA may later decide that such product candidate no longer meets the conditions for qualification or decide that the time period for FDA review or approval will not be shortened.
Recently, there has been heightened scrutiny of the accelerated approval pathway, with some stakeholders advocating for reform. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) Office of Inspector General has initiated an assessment of how the FDA implements the accelerated approval pathway. In addition, members of Congress have introduced proposed legislation to revise the statutory accelerated approval pathway, including with respect to FDA’s ability to rapidly withdraw products and indications for which effectiveness is not confirmed in post-marketing studies. At this time, it is not clear what impact, if any, these developments may have on the statutory accelerated approval pathway or our business, financial condition results of operations, or prospects.
If a therapy is intended for the treatment of a serious or life-threatening condition and the therapy demonstrates the potential to address unmet medical needs for this condition, the therapy sponsor may apply for Fast Track Designation. The FDA has broad discretion whether or not to grant this designation, so even if we believe a particular product candidate is eligible for this designation, we cannot assure you that the FDA would decide to grant it. Even if we do receive Fast Track Designation, we may not necessarily experience a faster development process, review or approval compared to conventional FDA procedures. The FDA may withdraw Fast Track Designation if it believes that the designation is no longer supported by data from our clinical development program. Fast Track Designation alone does not guarantee qualification for the FDA’s priority review procedures.
Regulatory authorities in some jurisdictions, including the United States and the European Economic Area (the “EEA”), may designate drugs and biologics for relatively small patient populations as orphan drugs. In the United States, the FDA may designate a drug or biologic as an orphan drug if it is intended to treat a rare disease or condition, which is defined as a disease or condition that affects fewer than 200,000 individuals annually in the United States or for which there is no reasonable expectation that costs of research and development of the drug for the disease or condition can be recovered by sales of the drug in the United States. Generally, if a product with an orphan drug designation subsequently receives the first marketing approval for the indication for which it has such designation, the product is entitled to a period of marketing exclusivity, which precludes the FDA from approving another marketing application for the same drug or biologic for the same orphan indication for that time period. In the United States, in order for a product to receive orphan drug exclusivity, FDA must not have previously approved a drug considered the same drug for the same orphan indication, or the subsequent drug must be shown to be clinically superior to such a previously approved same drug. The applicable period of marketing exclusivity is seven years in the United States. A similar data exclusivity scheme exists in the EEA. The European Commission, on the basis of a scientific opinion by the EMA’s Committee for Orphan Medicinal Products grants Orphan Drug Designation to promote the development of products that are intended for the diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of a life-threatening or chronically debilitating condition affecting not more than five in 10,000 persons in the EU. Additionally, designation is granted for products intended for the diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of a life-threatening, seriously debilitating or serious and chronic condition when, without incentives, it is unlikely that sales of the drug in the EU would be sufficient to justify the necessary investment in developing the drug or biological product. In any event, Orphan Drug Designation is granted only if there is no satisfactory method of diagnosis, prevention, or treatment, or, if such a method exists, the medicine must be of significant benefit to those affected by the condition. Orphan designation in the EU entitles a party to certain benefits, such as scientific assistance (protocol assistance), financial incentives such as reduction of fees or fee waivers and ten years of market exclusivity following drug or biological product approval. This orphan market exclusivity period prevents the European Commission, EMA and the competent authorities of the EU Member States from accepting an application or granting marketing authorization for any similar medicinal product intended for the same orphan indication. The orphan market exclusivity applies in parallel to the “normal” data and market exclusivity in the EEA, whereby no company can make reference to (rely on) the innovator drug company’s preclinical and clinical data in order to obtain a marketing authorization
 
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for eight years from the date of the first approval of the innovator drug in the EEA and no generic drug can be marketed for ten years from the first approval of the innovator drug in the EEA; the innovator drug may qualify for an extra year’s protection. This additional one year of marketing exclusivity may be obtained where the innovator company is granted a marketing authorization for a significant new indication for the relevant medicinal product. In such a situation, the generic company can only market their product after 11 years from the first grant of the innovator company’s marketing authorization for the product in the EEA.
Orphan drug exclusivity may be lost if the FDA or EMA determines that the request for designation was materially defective or if the manufacturer is unable to assure sufficient quantity of the drug or biologic to meet the needs of patients with the rare disease or condition. In the EEA, orphan drug designation, and the related benefits, may be lost if it is established before the market authorization is granted that the designation criteria are no longer met.
Moreover, the ten year orphan market exclusivity in the EEA may be reduced to six years if the orphan drug designation criteria are no longer met at the end of the fifth year since grant of the approval, including where it is shown that the product is sufficiently profitable not to justify maintenance of market exclusivity.
If we obtain orphan drug exclusivity for a product, that exclusivity may not effectively protect the product from competition because different drugs can be approved for the same condition. Even after an orphan drug is approved, the FDA or the European Commission can subsequently approve the same drug for a different condition or the same condition if the FDA or the EMA concludes that the later drug is clinically superior in that it is shown to be safer, more effective or makes a major contribution to patient care. In the EEA, a marketing authorization may also be granted, for the same therapeutic indication, to a competitor with a similar medicinal product during the exclusivity period if we are unable to supply sufficient quantities of the medicinal product for which we received marketing authorization. Upcoming legislative reforms in the EU may result in a reduction of market exclusivity periods for orphan medicinal products, changes to the concept of unmet medical need and/or imposition of additional requirements for grant of such exclusivity.
Moreover, a recent Eleventh Circuit decision in Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. vs. FDA regarding interpretation of the Orphan Drug Act exclusivity provisions as applied to drugs approved for orphan indications narrower than the drug’s orphan designation has the potential to significantly broaden the scope of orphan drug exclusivity for such products. Depending on how broadly FDA applies the Catalyst decision, it could fundamentally change how companies rely on, or seek to work around, orphan drug exclusivity. Legislation has been introduced that may reverse the Catalyst decision, and may be enacted as part of the reauthorization of user fees later this year.
Receipt of marketing approval for our products and product candidates does not guarantee that they will achieve market acceptance by physicians, patients, third-party payors or others in the medical community necessary for commercial success.
The commercial success of our products and product candidates will depend upon their degree of market acceptance by physicians, patients, third-party payors and others in the medical community. Receipt of marketing approval for our products and product candidates does not guarantee that they will gain sufficient market acceptance by physicians, patients, healthcare payors and others in the medical community. The degree of market acceptance for any product or product candidates we may develop, if approved for commercial sale, will depend on a number of factors, including:
 
   
the efficacy and safety of such products and product candidates as demonstrated in pivotal clinical trials and published in peer-reviewed journals;
 
   
the potential and perceived advantages compared to alternative treatments, including any similar generic treatments;
 
   
the ability to offer these products for sale at competitive prices;
 
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the ability to offer appropriate patient financial assistance programs, such as commercial insurance
co-pay
assistance;
 
   
convenience and ease of dosing and administration compared to alternative treatments;
 
   
the clinical indications for which the product or product candidate is approved by FDA or comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory agencies;
 
   
product labeling or product insert requirements of the FDA or other comparable
non-U.S.
regulatory authorities, including any limitations, contraindications or warnings contained in a product’s approved labeling;
 
   
restrictions on how the product is dispensed or distributed;
 
   
the timing of market introduction of competitive products;
 
   
publicity concerning these products or competing products and treatments;
 
   
the strength of marketing and distribution support;
 
   
favorable third-party coverage and sufficient reimbursement; and
 
   
the prevalence and severity of any side effects or adverse events.
Sales of medical products also depend on the willingness of physicians to prescribe the treatment, which is likely to be based on a determination by these physicians that the products are safe, therapeutically effective and cost effective. In addition, the inclusion or exclusion of products from treatment guidelines established by various physician groups and the viewpoints of influential physicians can affect the willingness of other physicians to prescribe such products.
If approved, our product candidates regulated as biologics may face competition from biosimilars approved through an abbreviated regulatory pathway.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (the “Affordable Care Act” or “ACA”), includes a subtitle called the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 (the “BPCIA”), which created an abbreviated approval pathway under section 351(k) of the Public Health Service Act (“PHSA”) for biological products that are biosimilar to or interchangeable with
an FDA-licensed reference
biological product. Under the BPCIA, a section 351(k) application for a biosimilar or interchangeable product may not be submitted to the FDA until four years following the date that the reference product was first licensed by the FDA. In addition, the approval of a biosimilar or interchangeable product may not be made effective by the FDA until 12 years from the date on which the reference product was first licensed. During
this 12-year period
of exclusivity, another company may still market a competing version of the reference product if the FDA approves a full BLA for the competing product submitted under section 351(a) of the PHSA containing the competing sponsor’s own preclinical data and data from adequate and well-controlled clinical trials to demonstrate the safety, purity, and potency of the other company’s product. The law is complex and is still being interpreted and implemented by the FDA and the FDA only approved the first interchangeable biosimilar in July 2021. As a result, its ultimate impact, implementation, and meaning are subject to uncertainty. In addition, the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020, which incorporated the framework from the Creating and Restoring Equal Access To Equivalent Samples legislation, purports to promote competition in the market for drugs and biological products by facilitating the timely entry of lower-cost generic and biosimilar versions of those drugs and biological products, including by allowing generic drug, 505(b)(2) NDA or biosimilar developers to obtain access to branded drug and biological product samples. While the full impact of these provisions is unclear at this time, its provisions do have the potential to facilitate the development and future approval of biosimilar versions of our products, introducing biosimilar competition that could have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
 
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Whether approval of a biological product qualifies for reference product exclusivity turns on whether FDA consider the approval a “first licensure.” Not every licensure of a biological product is considered a “first licensure” that gives rise to its own exclusivity period. We believe that our product candidates approved as a biological product under a BLA should qualify for
the 12-year period
of exclusivity. However, there is a risk that this exclusivity could be shortened due to congressional action or otherwise. Other aspects of the BPCIA, some of which may impact the BPCIA exclusivity provisions, have also been the subject of recent litigation. Moreover, the extent to which a biosimilar, once licensed, will be substituted for any one of our reference products in a way that is similar to traditional generic substitution
for non-biological products
is not yet clear, and will depend on a number of marketplace and regulatory factors that are still developing. If competitors are able to obtain marketing approval for biosimilars referencing our products, our products may become subject to competition from such biosimilars, with the attendant competitive pressure and consequences.
If we are unable to continue to expand our sales, marketing and distribution capabilities or enter into agreements with third parties to sell, market and distribute our products and product candidates, we may not be successful in commercializing those products and, if approved, product candidates.
We are currently in the process of establishing an infrastructure for the sales, marketing and distribution of VTAMA, which was approved by the FDA in May 2022 for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adults in the U.S. The costs of establishing and maintaining this infrastructure may exceed the cost-effectiveness of doing so. In order to effectively market our products and, if approved, product candidates, we must continue to expand our sales, distribution, marketing, compliance, managerial and other
non-technical
capabilities or make arrangements with third parties to perform these services. To achieve commercial success for our products and, if approved, product candidates, we will need an effective sales and marketing organization or to outsource these functions to third parties. To the extent we seek to do so, there is no guarantee that we will be able to enter into collaborations or strategic partnerships with third parties to engage in commercialization activities with respect to our products or product candidates.
There are risks involved with both establishing our own commercial capabilities and entering into arrangements with third parties to perform these services. For example, recruiting and training a sales force or reimbursement specialists is expensive and time consuming and could delay any product launch. If the commercial launch of a product or, if approved, product candidate for which we recruit a sales force and establish marketing and other commercialization capabilities is delayed or does not occur for any reason, we would have prematurely or unnecessarily incurred these commercialization expenses. This may be costly, and our investment would be lost if we cannot retain or reposition commercialization personnel.
Factors that may inhibit our efforts to commercialize a product or, if approved, product candidate on our own include:
 
   
the inability to recruit and retain adequate numbers of effective sales, marketing, reimbursement, customer service, medical affairs, and other support personnel;
 
   
the inability of sales personnel to obtain access to physicians or persuade adequate numbers of physicians to prescribe any future approved products;
 
   
the inability of reimbursement professionals to negotiate arrangements for formulary access, reimbursement, and other acceptance by payors;
 
   
the inability to price products at a sufficient price point to ensure an adequate and attractive level of profitability;
 
   
restricted or closed distribution channels that make it difficult to distribute our products to segments of the patient population;
 
   
the lack of complementary products to be offered by sales personnel, which may put us at a competitive disadvantage relative to companies with more extensive product lines; and
 
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unforeseen costs and expenses associated with creating an independent commercialization organization.
If we are unable to build our own sales force or negotiate a collaborative relationship for the commercialization of a product or, if approved, product candidate, we may be forced to delay commercialization or reduce the scope of our sales or marketing activities. If we elect to increase our expenditures to fund commercialization activities ourselves, we will need to obtain additional capital, which may not be available to us on acceptable terms, or at all. If we do not have sufficient funds, we will not be able to bring a product or, if approved, product candidate to market or generate product revenue. We could enter into arrangements with collaborative partners at an earlier stage than otherwise would be ideal and we may be required to relinquish certain rights to our products or product candidate or otherwise agree to terms unfavorable to us, any of which may have an adverse effect on our business, operating results and prospects.
If we enter into arrangements with third parties to perform sales, marketing, commercial support and distribution services, our product revenue or the profitability of product revenue may be lower than if we were to market and sell any products we may develop internally. In addition, we may not be successful in entering into arrangements with third parties to commercialize our product candidates or may be unable to do so on terms that are favorable to us. We may have little control over such third parties, and any of them may fail to devote the necessary resources and attention to sell and market our products effectively or may expose us to legal and regulatory risk by not adhering to regulatory requirements and restrictions governing the sale and promotion of prescription drug products, including those restricting
off-label
promotion. If we do not establish commercialization capabilities successfully, either on our own or in collaboration with third parties, we will not be successful in commercializing our products or, if approved, product candidates.
Our current and future relationships with investigators, health care professionals, consultants, third-party payors, patient support, charitable organizations, customers, and others are subject to applicable healthcare regulatory laws, which could expose us to penalties and other risks.
Our business operations and current and potential future arrangements with investigators, healthcare professionals, consultants, third-party payors, patient support, charitable organizations, customers, and others, expose us to broadly applicable fraud and abuse and other healthcare laws and regulations. These laws regulate the business or financial arrangements and relationships through which we conduct our operations, including how we research, market, sell and distribute our products and, if approved, product candidates. Such laws include, without limitation:
 
   
the federal Anti-Kickback Statute, which is a criminal law that prohibits, among other things, persons and entities from knowingly and willfully soliciting, offering, receiving or providing remuneration, directly or indirectly, in cash or in kind, to induce or reward, or in return for, either the referral of an individual for, or the purchase, lease, order or recommendation of, any good, facility, item or service, for which payment may be made, in whole or in part, under a federal healthcare program (such as Medicare and Medicaid). The term “remuneration” has been broadly interpreted by the federal government to include anything of value. Although there are a number of statutory exceptions and regulatory safe harbors protecting certain activities from prosecution, the exceptions and safe harbors are drawn narrowly, and arrangements may be subject to scrutiny or penalty if they do not fully satisfy all elements of an available exception or safe harbor. Practices that involve remuneration that may be alleged to be intended to induce prescribing, purchases or recommendations may be subject to scrutiny if they do not qualify for an exception or safe harbor. A person or entity does not need to have actual knowledge of the federal Anti-Kickback Statute or specific intent to violate it to have committed a violation; in addition, the government may assert that a claim including items or services resulting from a violation of the federal Anti-Kickback Statute constitutes a false or fraudulent claim for purposes of the False Claims Act. Violations of the federal Anti-Kickback Statute may result in civil monetary penalties up to $100,000 for each violation. Civil penalties for such conduct can further be assessed
 
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under the federal False Claims Act. Violations can also result in criminal penalties, including criminal fines and imprisonment of up to 10 years. Similarly, violations can result in exclusion from participation in government healthcare programs, including Medicare and Medicaid;
 
   
the federal false claims laws, including the False Claims Act, which imposes civil penalties, including through civil whistleblower or qui tam actions, against individuals or entities for knowingly presenting, or causing to be presented, to the federal government, claims for payment that are false or fraudulent; knowingly making, using or causing to be made or used, a false record or statement material to a false or fraudulent claim; or knowingly making or causing to be made, a false statement to avoid, decrease or conceal an obligation to pay money to the federal government. When an entity is determined to have violated the federal civil False Claims Act, the government may impose civil fines and penalties currently ranging from $11,803 to $23,607 for each false claim or statement for penalties assessed after December 13, 2021, plus treble damages, and exclude the entity from participation in Medicare, Medicaid and other federal healthcare programs;
 
   
the federal health care fraud statute (established by Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”)), which imposes criminal and civil liability for, among other things, knowingly and willfully executing, or attempting to execute, a scheme to defraud any healthcare benefit program or making false or fraudulent statements relating to healthcare matters; similar to the federal Anti-Kickback Statute, a person or entity does not need to have actual knowledge of the statute or specific intent to violate it to have committed a violation;
 
   
the Administrative Simplification provisions of HIPAA, as amended by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (“HITECH”), and their implementing regulations, which impose obligations, including mandatory contractual terms, with respect to safeguarding the privacy, security, and transmission of individually identifiable health information on health plans, health care clearing houses and most healthcare providers (collectively, “covered entities”), and such covered entities’ “business associates,” defined as independent contractors or agents of covered entities that create, receive or obtain protected health information in connection with providing a service for or on behalf of the covered entity;
 
   
various privacy, cybersecurity and data protection laws, rules and regulations at the international, federal, state and local level impose obligations with respect to safeguarding the privacy, security, and cross-border transmission of personal data and health information;
 
   
the federal Civil Monetary Penalties Law, which authorizes the imposition of substantial civil monetary penalties against an entity that engages in activities including, among others (1) knowingly presenting, or causing to be presented, a claim for services not provided as claimed or that is otherwise false or fraudulent in any way; (2) arranging for or contracting with an individual or entity that is excluded from participation in federal health care programs to provide items or services reimbursable by a federal health care program; (3) violations of the federal Anti-Kickback Statute; or (4) failing to report and return a known overpayment;
 
   
the federal Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which requires certain manufacturers of drugs, devices, biologics, and medical supplies for which payment is available under Medicare, Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (with certain exceptions) to report annually to the government information related to payments or other “transfers of value” made to physicians, certain other healthcare providers, and teaching hospitals, and requires applicable manufacturers and group purchasing organizations to report annually to the government ownership and investment interests held by the physicians described above and their immediate family members and payments or other “transfers of value” to such physician owners (covered manufacturers are required to submit reports to the government by the 90th day of each calendar year); and
 
   
analogous state and EU and foreign national laws and regulations, such as state anti-kickback and false claims laws, which may apply to our business practices, including but not limited to, research,
 
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distribution, sales, and marketing arrangements and claims involving healthcare items or services reimbursed by
non-governmental
third-party payors, including private insurers, or otherwise restrict payments that may be made to healthcare providers and other potential referral sources; state laws that require pharmaceutical companies to comply with the pharmaceutical industry’s voluntary compliance guidelines and the relevant compliance guidance promulgated by the federal government, and state laws that require drug manufacturers to report information related to payments and other transfers of value to physicians and other healthcare providers or marketing expenditures; and several recently passed state laws that require disclosures related to state agencies and/or commercial purchasers with respect to certain price increases that exceed a certain level as identified in the relevant statutes, some of which contain ambiguous requirements that government officials have not yet clarified; and EU and foreign national laws prohibiting promotion of prescription-only medicinal products to individuals other than healthcare professionals, governing strictly all aspects of interactions with healthcare professionals and healthcare organizations, including prior notification, review and/or approval of agreements with healthcare professionals, and requiring public disclosure of transfers of value made to a broad range of stakeholders, including healthcare professionals, healthcare organizations, medical students, physicians associations, patient organizations and editors of specialized press.
Efforts to ensure that our current and future business arrangements with third parties will comply with applicable healthcare laws and regulations will involve substantial costs. It is possible that governmental authorities will conclude that our business practices do not comply with current or future statutes, regulations, agency guidance or case law involving applicable healthcare laws. If our operations are found to be in violation of any of these or any other applicable health regulatory laws that may apply to us, we may be subject to significant penalties, including the imposition of significant civil, criminal and administrative penalties, damages, monetary fines, disgorgement, individual imprisonment, possible exclusion from participation in Medicare, Medicaid and other federal healthcare programs, contractual damages, reputational harm, diminished profits and future earnings, additional reporting requirements and oversight if we become subject to a corporate integrity agreement or similar agreement and curtailment or restructuring of our operations, any of which could adversely affect our ability to operate our business and our results of operations. Even the mere issuance of a subpoena, civil investigative demand or the fact of an investigation alone, regardless of the merit, may result in negative publicity, a drop in our share price and other harm to our business, financial condition and our results of operations. Defending against any such actions can be costly, time-consuming and may require significant financial and personnel resources. Therefore, even if we are successful in defending against any such actions that may be brought against us, our business may be impaired.
Healthcare legislative measures aimed at reducing healthcare costs may have a material adverse effect on our business and results of operations.
The United States and many other jurisdictions have enacted or proposed legislative and regulatory changes affecting the healthcare system that could restrict or regulate post-approval activities for our products and affect our ability to profitably sell our products, and prevent or delay marketing approval of our current and any future product candidates. Changes in regulations, statutes or the interpretation of existing regulations could impact our business in the future by requiring, for example: (i) changes to our manufacturing arrangements; (ii) additions or modifications to product labeling; (iii) the recall or discontinuation of our products; or (iv) additional record-keeping requirements. If any such changes were to be imposed, they could adversely affect the operation of our business.
In the United States, there have been and continue to be a number of legislative initiatives to contain healthcare costs, including costs for pharmaceuticals. For example, in March 2010, the ACA was passed, which substantially changed the way healthcare is financed by both governmental and private insurers, and significantly impacted the U.S. pharmaceutical industry. The ACA, among other things, subjects biological products to potential competition by lower-cost biosimilars, addresses a new methodology by which rebates owed by manufacturers under the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program are calculated for drugs that are inhaled, infused,
 
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instilled, implanted or injected, increases the minimum Medicaid rebates owed by manufacturers under the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program and extends the rebate program to individuals enrolled in Medicaid managed care organizations, establishes annual fees and taxes on manufacturers of certain branded prescription drugs, and creates a new Medicare Part D coverage gap discount program, in which manufacturers must agree to offer 70%
point-of-sale
discounts off negotiated prices of applicable brand drugs to eligible beneficiaries during their coverage gap period, as a condition for the manufacturer’s outpatient drugs to be covered under Medicare Part D.
Since its enactment, there have been numerous judicial, administrative, executive, and legislative challenges to certain aspects of the ACA, and we expect there will be additional challenges and amendments to the ACA in the future, with unpredictable and uncertain results. Congress has introduced several pieces of legislation aimed at significantly revising or repealing the ACA. The law appears likely to continue the downward pressure on pharmaceutical pricing, especially under the Medicare program, and may also increase our regulatory burdens and operating costs.
In addition, other legislative changes have been proposed and adopted in the United States since the ACA was enacted. In August 2011, the Budget Control Act of 2011, among other things, created measures for spending reductions by Congress. A Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, tasked with recommending a targeted deficit reduction of at least $1.2 trillion for the years 2013 through 2021, was unable to reach required goals, thereby triggering the legislation’s automatic reduction to several government programs. This includes aggregate reductions of Medicare payments to providers of 2% per fiscal year, which went into effect in 2013, and, due to subsequent legislative amendments, will after a pause in early 2022 remain in effect through 2031 unless additional Congressional action is taken. Pursuant to the CARES Act and subsequent legislation, these reductions were suspended from May 1, 2020 through March 31, 2022 due to the
COVID-19
pandemic. Under current legislation the actual reduction in Medicare payments will vary from 1% in 2022 to up to 3% in the final fiscal year of the sequester. The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 further reduced Medicare payments to several providers, including hospitals and cancer treatment centers, and increased the statute of limitations period for the government to recover overpayments to providers from three to five years.
There has been increasing legislative and enforcement interest in the United States with respect to drug pricing practices. Specifically, there have been several recent U.S. Congressional inquiries and proposed federal and state legislation designed to, among other things, bring more transparency to drug pricing, reduce the cost of prescription drugs under Medicare, and reform government program reimbursement methodologies for drugs. Current Congressional proposals include direct price negotiation by Medicare in Medicare Parts B and D, international reference pricing for certain Medicare drugs, and inflationary rebates on Part B and Part D drugs whose prices increase above a certain amount, and Part D drug benefit redesign. At the federal level, the former Trump administration released a “Blueprint” to lower drug prices and reduce out of pocket costs of drugs that contains additional proposals to increase manufacturer competition, increase the negotiating power of certain federal healthcare programs, incentivize manufacturers to lower the list price of their products and reduce the out of pocket costs of drug products paid by consumers. HHS implemented several of these provisions to date. In May 2019, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (the “CMS”), issued a final rule to allow Medicare Advantage Plans the option of using step therapy, a type of prior authorization, for Part B drugs beginning January 1, 2020. Additionally, on November 20, 2020, HHS finalized a regulation removing safe harbor protection for price reductions from pharmaceutical manufacturers to plan sponsors under Part D, either directly or through pharmacy benefit managers, unless the price reduction is required by law. This rulemaking also created a new safe harbor for price reductions reflected at the
point-of-sale,
as well as a safe harbor for certain fixed fee arrangements between pharmacy benefit managers and manufacturers. However, Congress adopted a
six-year
moratorium on implementation or enforcement of the rule as a part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. In July 2021, President Biden issued an executive order pertaining to drug pricing, which expressed support for legislation allowing direct negotiation in Medicare Part D and inflationary rebates, and directed various executive branch agencies to take actions to lower drug prices and promote generic competition. Moreover, on November 19, 2021, the House passed the Build Back Better Act, which among other provisions, would permit the Secretary of HHS to negotiate certain high-expenditure Part D drugs, impose inflationary
 
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rebates for Part D drugs, and redesign the Part D benefit. The Senate Finance Committee introduced a modified version of the legislation on December 11, 2021, but negotiations have since stalled. Although the House and Senate versions of this legislation would grant certain exceptions for “small biotech drugs” and “specified small manufacturers,” if passed, we cannot predict how these exceptions would be implemented and their impact on Roivant.
Moreover, upcoming legislative and policy changes in the EU, some of which may materialize as early as 2022, are aimed at increasing accessibility and affordability of medicinal products, as well as at increased cooperation between the EU Member States. Such initiatives may further impact the price and reimbursement status of our products in the future.
There have been, and likely will continue to be, legislative and regulatory proposals at the national and state levels in jurisdictions around the world directed at containing or lowering the cost of healthcare, including prescription drugs. The implementation of cost containment measures or other healthcare reforms may prevent us from being able to generate revenue, attain profitability, or commercialize our products and, if approved, our product candidates. Such reforms could have an adverse effect on anticipated revenue from our products and, if approved, product candidates and may affect our overall financial condition and ability to develop future product candidates and obtain marketing approval for those product candidates. We cannot predict the initiatives that may be adopted in the future. The continuing efforts of the government, insurance companies, managed care organizations and other payors of healthcare services to contain or reduce costs of healthcare and/or impose price controls may adversely affect:
 
   
the demand for our products and, if approved, product candidates;
 
   
our ability to receive or set a price that we believe is fair for our products;
 
   
our ability to generate revenue and achieve or maintain profitability;
 
   
the amount of taxes that we are required to pay; and
 
   
the availability of capital.
We expect that healthcare reform measures that may be adopted in the future, may result in additional reductions in Medicare and other healthcare funding, more rigorous coverage criteria, lower reimbursement and new payment methodologies. This could lower the price that we receive for our products and, if approved, product candidates. Any denial in coverage or reduction in reimbursement from Medicare or other government-funded programs may result in a similar denial or reduction in payments from private payors, which may prevent us from being able to generate sufficient revenue, attain profitability or successfully commercialize our products and, if approved, product candidates.
Coverage and adequate reimbursement may not be available for our products and, if approved, product candidates, which could make it difficult for us to profitably sell our products and, if approved, product candidates.
Market acceptance and sales of our products and, if approved, product candidates will depend in part on the extent to which coverage and adequate reimbursement for these products and product candidates and related treatments will be available from third-party payors, including government health administration authorities and private health insurers. The pricing and reimbursement of our products and, if approved, product candidates, must be adequate to support commercial infrastructure. If we are unable to obtain adequate levels of reimbursement, our ability to successfully market and sell our products and, if approved, product candidates, will be adversely affected. The manner and level at which reimbursement is provided for services related to our products and product candidates (e.g., for administration of our products to patients) is also important. Inadequate reimbursement for such services may lead to physician resistance and adversely affect our ability to market or sell our products and, if approved, product candidates. There is no assurance that our products or, if approved, product candidates, would achieve adequate coverage and reimbursement levels.
 
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In the United States, no uniform policy of coverage and reimbursement exists among third-party payors. Third-party payors decide which drugs they will pay for and establish reimbursement levels. Third-party payors often rely upon Medicare coverage policy and payment limitations in setting their own coverage and reimbursement policies. However, decisions regarding the extent of coverage and amount of reimbursement to be provided for any product or, if approved, product candidate will be made on a
plan-by-plan
basis. One payor’s determination to provide coverage for a product does not assure that other payors will also provide coverage, and adequate reimbursement, for the product. Additionally, a third-party payor’s decision to provide coverage for a drug does not imply that an adequate reimbursement rate will be approved. Each plan determines whether or not it will provide coverage for a drug, what amount it will pay the manufacturer for the drug, on what tier of its formulary the drug will be placed and whether to require step therapy. The position of a drug on a formulary generally determines the
co-payment
that a patient will need to make to obtain the drug and can strongly influence the adoption of a drug by patients and physicians. Patients who are prescribed treatments for their conditions and providers prescribing such services generally rely on third-party payors to reimburse all or part of the associated healthcare costs. Patients are unlikely to use our product or, if approved, product candidates, unless coverage is provided and reimbursement is adequate to cover a significant portion of the cost of the product or product candidate. Further, from time to time, typically on an annual basis, payment rates are updated and revised by third-party payors. Such updates could impact the demand for our products or, if approved, product candidates, to the extent that patients who are prescribed our products or, if approved, product candidates, are not separately reimbursed for the cost of the product.
The process for determining whether a third-party payor will provide coverage for a product may be separate from the process for setting the price of a product or for establishing the reimbursement rate that such a payor will pay for the product. Even if we obtain adequate levels of reimbursement, third-party payors, such as government or private healthcare insurers, carefully review and increasingly question the coverage of, and challenge the prices charged for, products. A primary trend in the U.S. healthcare industry and elsewhere is cost containment. Increasingly, third-party payors are requiring that pharmaceutical companies provide them with predetermined discounts from list prices and are challenging the prices for products. We may also be required to conduct expensive pharmacoeconomic studies to justify the coverage and the amount of reimbursement for particular medications. We cannot be sure that coverage and reimbursement will be available for any product that we commercialize and, if reimbursement is available, what the level of reimbursement will be. Inadequate coverage and reimbursement may impact the demand for, or the price of, any product or, if approved, product candidate. If coverage and adequate reimbursement are not available, or are available only to limited levels, we may not be able to successfully commercialize any product or, if approved, product candidate that we develop.
Additionally, there have been a number of legislative and regulatory proposals to change the healthcare system in the United States and in some other jurisdictions that could affect our ability to profitably sell any product or, if approved, product candidate. These legislative and regulatory changes may negatively impact the reimbursement for any product or, if approved, product candidate. There can be no assurance that our products or, if approved, product candidates, will be considered medically reasonable and necessary, that they will be considered cost-effective by third-party payors, that coverage or an adequate level of reimbursement will be available, or that reimbursement policies and practices in the United States and in other countries where our products and, if approved, product candidates, are sold will not harm our ability to profitably sell our products and, if approved, product candidates.
In the EU, similar political, economic and regulatory developments may affect our ability to profitably commercialize our products or, if approved, product candidates. In addition to continuing pressure on prices and cost containment measures, legislative developments in the EU or the EU Member States may harm our ability to profitably sell our products and, if approved, product candidates. The delivery of healthcare in the EU, including the establishment and operation of health services and the pricing and reimbursement of medicines, is almost exclusively a matter for national EU Member States law. National governments and health service providers have different priorities and approaches to the delivery of health care and the pricing and reimbursement of products in that context. The healthcare budgetary constraints in most countries have resulted in restrictions on the pricing
 
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and reimbursement of medicines. In markets outside of the United States and EU, reimbursement and healthcare payment systems vary significantly by country, and many countries have instituted price ceilings on specific products and therapies. All of this could affect our ability to commercialize our products and, if approved, product candidates.
Recent federal legislation and actions by state and local governments may permit reimportation of drugs from foreign countries into the United States, including foreign countries where the drugs are sold at lower prices than in the United States, which could materially adversely affect our operating results.
We may face competition in the United States for our products and, if approved, product candidates, from therapies sourced from foreign countries that have placed price controls on pharmaceutical products. In the United States, the Medicare Modernization Act (“MMA”) contains provisions that may change U.S. importation laws and expand pharmacists’ and wholesalers’ ability to import cheaper versions of an approved drug and competing products from Canada, where there are government price controls. These changes to U.S. importation laws will not take effect unless and until the Secretary of the HHS certifies that the changes will pose no additional risk to the public’s health and safety and will result in a significant reduction in the cost of products to consumers. On September 23, 2020, the Secretary of HHS made such certification to Congress, and on October 1, 2020, the FDA published a final rule that allows for the importation of certain prescription drugs from Canada. Under the final rule, States and Indian Tribes, and in certain future circumstances pharmacists and wholesalers, may submit importation program proposals to the FDA for review and authorization. Since the issuance of the final rule, on November 23, 2020, several industry groups filed federal lawsuits in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, requesting injunctive relief to prevent implementation of the rule. Further, authorities in Canada have passed rules designed to safeguard the Canadian drug supply from shortages. On September 25, 2020, CMS stated drugs imported by States under this rule will not be eligible for federal rebates under Section 1927 of the Social Security Act and manufacturers would not report these drugs for “best price” or Average Manufacturer Price purposes. Since these drugs are not considered covered outpatient drugs, CMS further stated it will not publish a National Average Drug Acquisition Cost for these drugs. Separately, the FDA also issued a final guidance document outlining a pathway for manufacturers to obtain an additional National Drug Code (“NDC”), for an
FDA-approved
drug that was originally intended to be marketed in a foreign country and that was authorized for sale in that foreign country. In addition, the July 2021 executive order pertaining to drug pricing directs the FDA to support and work with States and Indian Tribes to develop importation plans to import prescription drugs from Canada under the MMA and final rule. If implemented, importation of drugs from Canada may materially and adversely affect the price we receive for our products and, if approved, product candidates. The regulatory and market implications of the final rule and guidance are unknown at this time. Proponents of drug reimportation may attempt to pass legislation that would directly allow reimportation under certain circumstances. Legislation or regulations allowing the reimportation of drugs, if enacted, could decrease the price we receive for our products and, if approved, product candidates and adversely affect our future revenues and prospects for profitability.
Other Risks Related to Our Business and Industry
We depend on the knowledge and skills of our senior leaders and may not be able to manage our business effectively if we are unable to attract and retain key personnel.
We have benefited substantially from the leadership, performance and vision of our senior leaders, in particular, our founder and Chairman, Vivek Ramaswamy, our Principal Executive Officer, Matthew Gline, and other senior executives at Roivant and the Vants. We rely greatly on the investment experience and medical and scientific expertise of our senior leadership team to identify product candidates and guide future investments and opportunities, as well as the drug development expertise of our and the Vants’ senior leadership to guide the preclinical and clinical development of our product candidates. Our success will depend on our ability to retain our current management team. In addition, while we expect to engage in an orderly transition process as we integrate newly appointed officers and managers, we face a variety of risks and uncertainties related to
 
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management transition, including diversion of management attention from business concerns, failure to retain other key personnel or loss of institutional knowledge. Competition for senior leadership in the healthcare investment industry is intense, and we cannot guarantee that we will be able to retain our key personnel or that of our Vants.
Our senior leaders and key employees may terminate their positions with us at any time. Due to the small number of employees at some of the Vants, the loss of a key employee may have a larger impact on our business. In particular, we rely on a limited number of employees in certain key jurisdictions, including the United Kingdom (the “U.K.”), Switzerland and Bermuda. If we lose one or more members of our or the Vants’ senior leadership teams or other key employees, our ability to successfully implement our business strategies could be adversely impacted. Replacing these individuals may be difficult, cause disruption and may take an extended period of time due to the limited number of individuals in our industry with the breadth of skills and experience required to develop, gain regulatory approval of, and commercialize product candidates successfully. Competition to hire from this limited pool is intense, and we may be unable to hire, train, retain or motivate additional key personnel. We do not maintain “key person” insurance for any members of our senior leadership team or other employees.
To encourage valuable employees to remain at our company, in addition to salary and cash incentives, we have provided certain equity awards that vest over time. The value to employees of equity awards that vest over time may be significantly affected by movements in our share price that are beyond our control and may at any time be insufficient to counteract more lucrative offers from other companies. Despite our efforts to retain invaluable employees, members of our management, scientific and development teams may terminate their employment with us at any time. Although we have employment agreements with our key employees, certain of these employment agreements provide for
at-will
employment, which means that any of our employees could leave our employment at any time. Our success also depends on our ability to continue to attract, retain and motivate highly skilled junior,
mid-level
and senior managers as well as junior,
mid-level
and senior scientific and medical personnel.
We will need to expand our organization and may experience difficulties in managing this growth, which could disrupt operations.
In connection with our continued growth, we expect to hire, either directly or through our current or future affiliates, additional employees for our managerial, finance and accounting, clinical, scientific and engineering, regulatory, operational, manufacturing, sales and marketing teams. We may have difficulties in connection with identifying, hiring, integrating and retaining new personnel. Future growth would impose significant additional responsibilities on management, including the need to identify, recruit, maintain, motivate and integrate additional employees, consultants and contractors. Also, management may need to divert a disproportionate amount of its attention away from our
day-to-day
activities and devote a substantial amount of time to managing these growth activities. We may not be able to effectively manage the expansion of operations across our entities, which may result in weaknesses in infrastructure, give rise to operational mistakes, loss of business opportunities, loss of employees and reduced productivity among remaining employees. Our future growth could require significant capital expenditures and may divert financial resources from other projects, such as the development of product candidates. If our management is unable to effectively manage our growth, our expenses may increase more than expected, our ability to generate and/or grow revenues could be reduced, and we may not be able to implement our business strategy. Our future financial performance and ability to commercialize product candidates and new technologies and compete effectively will partly depend on our ability to effectively manage any future growth.
Many of the other pharmaceutical and healthcare technology companies that we compete against for qualified personnel and consultants have greater financial and other resources, different risk profiles and a longer operating history in the industry than us. They also may provide more diverse opportunities and better chances for career advancement. Some of these opportunities may be more appealing to high-quality candidates and
 
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consultants than what we have to offer. If we are unable to continue to attract and retain high-quality personnel and consultants, the rate and success at which we can discover and develop our products and product candidates will be harmed, which could negatively impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.
Our international operations may expose us to business, legal, regulatory, political, operational, financial and economic risks associated with conducting business globally.
Part of our business strategy involves potential expansion internationally with third-party collaborators to seek regulatory approval for our products and product candidates globally. Doing business internationally involves a number of risks, including but not limited to:
 
   
multiple conflicting and changing laws and regulations such as tax laws, export and import restrictions, employment laws, anti-bribery and anti-corruption laws, regulatory requirements and other governmental approvals, permits and licenses;
 
   
failure by us or our collaborators to obtain appropriate licenses or regulatory approvals for the sale or use of our products or, if approved, product candidates, in various countries;
 
   
difficulties in managing operations in different jurisdictions;
 
   
complexities associated with managing multiple payor-reimbursement regimes or
self-pay
systems;
 
   
financial risks, such as longer payment cycles, difficulty enforcing contracts and collecting accounts receivable and exposure to currency exchange rate fluctuations;
 
   
varying protection for intellectual property rights;
 
   
natural disasters, political and economic instability, including wars, terrorism and political unrest, outbreak of disease, boycotts, curtailment of trade and other business restrictions; and
 
   
failure to comply with the United States Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (the “FCPA”), including its books and records provisions and its anti-bribery provisions, the United Kingdom Bribery Act 2010 (the “U.K. Bribery Act”), and similar anti-bribery and anti-corruption laws in other jurisdictions, for example by failing to maintain accurate information and control over sales or distributors’ activities.
Any of these risks, if encountered, could significantly harm our future international expansion and operations and, consequently, negatively impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.
Unfavorable global economic conditions could adversely affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Our ability to invest in and expand our business and meet our financial obligations, to attract and retain third-party contractors and collaboration partners and to raise additional capital depends on our operating and financial performance, which, in turn, is subject to numerous factors, including the prevailing economic and political conditions and financial, business and other factors beyond our control, such as the rate of unemployment, the number of uninsured persons in the United States, political influences and inflationary pressures. For example, an overall decrease in or loss of insurance coverage among individuals in the United States as a result of unemployment, underemployment or the repeal of certain provisions of the ACA may decrease the demand for healthcare services and pharmaceuticals. If fewer patients are seeking medical care because they do not have insurance coverage, we may experience difficulties in commercializing our products and, if approved, product candidates and our business, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows could be adversely affected.
In addition, our results of operations could be adversely affected by general conditions in the global economy and in the global financial markets upon which pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies such as us are dependent for sources of capital. In the past, global financial crises have caused extreme volatility and
 
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disruptions in the capital and credit markets. A severe or prolonged economic downturn could result in a variety of risks to our business, including a reduced ability to raise additional capital when needed on acceptable terms, if at all, and weakened demand for our products and, if approved, product candidates. A weak or declining economy could also strain our suppliers, possibly resulting in supply disruption. Any of the foregoing could harm our business and we cannot anticipate all of the ways in which the current economic climate and financial market conditions could adversely impact our business.
We face significant competition in an environment of rapid technological and scientific change, and there is a possibility that our competitors may achieve certain regulatory approvals before us or develop therapies that are safer, more advanced or more effective than ours, which may negatively impact our ability to successfully market or commercialize our products and, if approved, product candidates and ultimately harm our financial condition.
The development and commercialization of new drug products is highly competitive. Now and in the future we may face competition from major pharmaceutical companies, specialty pharmaceutical companies and biotechnology companies worldwide with respect to our products and product candidates. Potential competitors also include academic institutions, government agencies and other public and private research organizations that conduct research, seek patent protection and establish collaborative arrangements for research, development, manufacturing and commercialization.
There are a number of large pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies that are currently pursuing the development and commercialization of products and product candidates for the treatment of the indications that we are also pursuing. Examples of such competing products include, but are not limited to:
 
   
Roflumilast, a PDE4 inhibitor, a potential competitor to VTAMA, which in May 2022 was approved by the FDA for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adults in the U.S. under the brand name VTAMA cream and which is also in development by Dermavant for the topical treatment of atopic dermatitis;
 
   
Ruxolitinib, a topical Janus kinase inhibitor, a potential competitor to VTAMA, in development by Dermavant for the topical treatment of atopic dermatitis;
 
   
Teprotumumab, an insulin-like growth
factor-1
receptor inhibitor, which in January 2020 was approved by the FDA for the treatment of TED, a potential competitor to batoclimab, in development by Immunovant for the treatment of TED and other autoimmune diseases;
 
   
VYVGART
(efgartigimod alfa-fcab), a neonatal Fc receptor blocker, which in December 2021 was approved by the FDA for the treatment of MG in adults who test positive for the anti-acetylcholine receptor antibody, a potential competitor to batoclimab, in development by Immunovant for the treatment of MG and other autoimmune diseases;
 
   
Efgartigimod, an anti-FcRn antibody fragment, nipocalimab, an anti-FcRn antibody, Zilucoplan, a peptide inhibitor of C5, and inebilizumab, a CD19-targeted humanized monoclonal antibody, all potential competitors to batoclimab, in development by Immunovant for the treatment of MG and other autoimmune diseases;
 
   
Ultomiris
(Ravulizumab-cwvz),
a complement inhibitor, which in April 2022 was approved by the FDA for the treatment of generalized MG in adults who are anti-acetylcholine receptor antibody-positive, a potential competitor to batoclimab, in development by Immunovant for the treatment of MG and other autoimmune diseases;
 
   
Rituximab, a monoclonal antibody, a potential competitor to batoclimab, in development by Immunovant for the treatment of TED, WAIHA and other autoimmune diseases;
 
   
Fostamatinib, a syk inhibitor, ibrutinib, a BTK inhibitor, and ANX005, an antibody inhibitor, all potential competitors to batoclimab, in development by Immunovant for the treatment of WAIHA and other autoimmune diseases; and
 
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If any of these or other competitors, including competitors for our other product candidates, receive FDA approval before we do, our products or product candidates would not be the first treatment on the market, and our market share may be limited.
Many of our current or potential competitors, either alone or with their strategic partners, have significantly greater financial resources and expertise in research and development, manufacturing, preclinical testing, conducting clinical trials, obtaining regulatory approvals and marketing approved products than we do.
Mergers and acquisitions in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries may result in even more resources being concentrated among a smaller number of our competitors. Smaller or early-stage companies may also prove to be significant competitors, particularly through collaborative arrangements with large and established companies. These competitors also compete with us in recruiting and retaining qualified scientific and management personnel and establishing clinical trial sites and patient registration for clinical trials, as well as in acquiring technologies complementary to, or necessary for, our programs. Our commercial opportunity could be reduced or eliminated if our competitors develop and commercialize products that are safer, more effective, have fewer or less severe side effects, are more convenient, or are less expensive than our products and product candidates. Furthermore, currently approved products could be discovered to have application for treatment of our targeted disease indications or similar indications, which could give such products significant regulatory and market timing advantages over our products and product candidates. Our competitors also may obtain FDA or other regulatory approval for their products more rapidly than we may obtain approval for ours and may obtain orphan product exclusivity from the FDA for indications that we are targeting, which could result in our competitors establishing a strong market position before we are able to enter the market. Additionally, products or technologies developed by our competitors may render our products or product candidates uneconomical or obsolete and we may not be successful in marketing our products or, if approved, any product candidates we may develop against competitors.
In addition, we could face litigation or other proceedings with respect to the scope, ownership, validity and/or enforceability of our patents relating to our competitors’ products and our competitors may allege that our products or product candidates infringe, misappropriate or otherwise violate their intellectual property. The availability of our competitors’ products could limit the demand, and the price we are able to charge, for our products and, if approved, any product candidates we may develop.
The markets in which our healthcare technology Vants participate are competitive, and if we do not compete effectively, our business and operating results could be adversely affected.
The overall market for healthcare technologies and software is global, rapidly evolving, competitive and subject to changing technology and shifting customer focus. Our healthcare technology Vants, including Lokavant, a clinical trial technology company, face competition from well-established providers of similar solutions, certain of which may have long-standing relationships with many of our current and potential customers, including large biopharmaceutical companies. We also face competition from solutions that biopharmaceutical companies develop internally and from smaller companies that offer products and services directed at more specific markets than we target, enabling these smaller competitors to focus a greater proportion of their efforts and resources on these markets, as well as a large number of companies that have been founded with the goal of applying machine learning technologies to drug discovery.
Many of our competitors are able to devote greater resources to the development, promotion, and sale of their software solutions and services. Third parties with greater available resources and the ability to initiate or withstand substantial price competition could acquire our current or potential competitors. Our competitors may also establish cooperative relationships among themselves or with third parties that may further enhance their product offerings or resources. If our competitors’ products, services or technologies become more accepted than our solutions, if our competitors are successful in bringing their products or services to market earlier than ours, if our competitors are able to respond more quickly and effectively to new or changing opportunities,
 
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technologies, or customer requirements, or if their products or services are more technologically capable than ours, then the business and prospects of these Vants could be adversely affected.
We and our subsidiaries are subject to litigation and investigation risks which could adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition and could cause the market value of our Common Shares to decline. Insurance coverage may not be available for, or adequate to cover, all potential exposure for litigation and other business risks.
We and our subsidiaries are from time to time subject to various litigation matters and claims, including regulatory proceedings, administrative proceedings, securities litigation and other lawsuits, and governmental investigations. In addition, we and our subsidiaries may receive requests for information from governmental agencies in connection with their regulatory or investigatory authority or from private third parties pursuant to subpoena. These proceedings may be complex and prolonged, and may occupy the resources of our and our subsidiaries’ management and employees. These proceedings are also costly to prosecute and defend and may involve substantial awards or damages payable by us or our subsidiaries if not favorably resolved. We and our subsidiaries may be required to pay substantial amounts or grant certain rights on unfavorable terms in order to settle such proceedings. We also face risks relating to litigation arising from judgments made by us and the Vants as to the materiality of any developments in our businesses, including with respect to preclinical and clinical data, and the resulting disclosure (or lack thereof) may give rise to securities litigation.
We maintain insurance policies for certain litigation and various business risks, but such policies may not be adequate to compensate us for any or all potential losses. In addition, such insurance may not be available to us in the future on economically reasonable terms, or at all. Further, our insurance, if available, may not cover all claims made against us and defending a suit, regardless of its merit, could be costly and divert management’s attention. Because of the uncertain nature of litigation, investigations and insurance coverage decisions, it is not possible to predict the outcome of these matters as they arise from time to time, and they could have a material adverse effect on our and our subsidiaries’ business, results of operations, and financial condition, could impact our ability to consummate a transaction that is challenged or otherwise subject to such litigation and could cause the market value of our Common Shares to decline.
We may not hold a controlling stake in certain of our subsidiaries and thus may not be able to direct our business or the development of our product candidates.
For certain of the Vants, including Arbutus and Sio Gene Therapies, we hold less than a majority ownership interest or are otherwise limited in our ability to direct or control the business and the development of the product candidates or technologies at the Vant. In addition, for certain other Vants, including Immunovant, we may in the future come to hold less than a majority ownership interest in the Vant. Furthermore, even if we own a majority ownership interest in a Vant, we may not necessarily be able to control the outcome of certain corporate actions. If the business or development of a product candidate at one of these Vants were to face challenges, we would be adversely affected as a result and would be limited in our ability to cause or influence the Vant in question to take appropriate remediative actions.
Our business and operations would suffer in the event of system failures, cyber-attacks or a deficiency in our cyber-security.
Our computer systems, as well as those of various third parties on which we presently rely, or may rely on in the future, including our CROs and other contractors, consultants and law and accounting firms, may sustain damage from or otherwise be subject to computer viruses, unauthorized access, data breaches, phishing attacks, cybercriminals, natural disasters (including hurricanes and earthquakes), terrorism, war and telecommunication and electrical failures. Such information technology systems are additionally vulnerable to security breaches from inadvertent or intentional actions by our employees, third-party vendors, contractors, consultants, business partners, and/or other third parties. Any of the foregoing may compromise our system infrastructure, or that of
 
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our third-party vendors and other contractors and consultants, or lead to data leakage. The risks of a security breach or disruption, particularly through cyber-attacks or cyber intrusion, including by traditional computer “hackers,” threat actors, personnel (such as through theft or misuse), sophisticated nation-state and nation-state-supported actors, sovereign governments and cyber terrorists, have generally increased over time, including for geopolitical reasons and in conjunction with military conflicts and defense activities, along with the number, intensity and sophistication of attempted attacks and intrusions from around the world. During times of war and other major conflicts, we and the third parties upon which we rely may be vulnerable to a heightened risk of these attacks, including cyber-attacks that could materially disrupt our systems and operations, supply chain and ability to produce, sell and distribute our products and product candidates. In addition, there may be an increased risk of cybersecurity attacks due to the onset of hostilities by Russia towards Ukraine, including cybersecurity attacks perpetrated by Russia or others at its direction in response to economic sanctions and other actions taken against Russia as a result of its invasion of Ukraine. Any increase in such attacks on us or our third-party vendors or other systems could adversely affect our network systems or other operations.
We generally require our third-party providers to implement effective security measures and to identify and correct for any such failures, deficiencies or breaches. Although we seek to supervise such third parties’ security measures, our ability to do so is limited. If the information technology systems of our third-party vendors and other contractors and consultants become subject to disruptions or security breaches, we may have insufficient recourse against such third parties and we may have to expend significant resources to mitigate the impact of such an event and to develop and implement protections to prevent future events of this nature from occurring.
We cannot anticipate all possible types of security threats and we cannot guarantee that our data protection efforts and our investments in information technology will prevent significant breakdowns, data leakages, security breaches in our systems, or those of our third-party vendors and other contractors and consultants, or other cyber incidents that could have a material adverse effect upon our reputation, business, operations, or financial condition. If any of the aforementioned security events were to occur, it could result in a material disruption of our commercialization efforts, drug development programs and other business operations. For example, the loss of nonclinical or clinical trial data from completed, ongoing or planned trials could result in delays in our regulatory approval efforts and significantly increase our costs to recover or reproduce the data. In addition, we rely on third parties to supply components for and to manufacture our product candidates and to conduct clinical trials, and similar events relating to their computer systems could also have a material adverse effect on our business. To the extent that any disruption or security breach were to result in a loss of or damage to our data or applications, or inappropriate disclosure of personal, confidential or proprietary information, we could incur liability and reputational damage and the commercialization efforts for our products and further development of any product candidate could be delayed. The costs related to significant security breaches or disruptions could be material and exceed the limits of the cybersecurity insurance we maintain against such risks.
We are subject to stringent privacy, data protection and information security laws, regulations, policies and contractual obligations related to data privacy and security and changes in such laws, regulations, policies and contractual obligations could adversely affect our business.
We are subject to data privacy and protection laws and regulations that apply to the collection, transmission, storage and use of personally-identifying information, which among other things, impose certain requirements relating to the privacy, security and transmission of personal information. The legislative and regulatory landscape for privacy and data protection continues to evolve in jurisdictions worldwide. Failure to comply with applicable privacy and data security laws and regulations could result in enforcement actions against us, including possible fines, imprisonment of company officials and public censure, claims for damages by affected individuals, damage to our reputation and loss of goodwill, any of which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations or prospects.
There are numerous U.S. federal and state laws and regulations related to the privacy, data protection and security of personal information. At the federal level, regulations promulgated pursuant to HIPAA establish
 
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privacy and security standards for “covered entities” (group health plans and most healthcare providers) that limit the use and disclosure of individually identifiable health information those entities receive or create (“protected health information”), and require the implementation of administrative, physical and technological safeguards to protect the security, confidentiality, integrity and availability of electronic protected health information. While we generally are not subject to HIPAA in our business, we do business with various entities that are subject to HIPAA and we have to expend resources to understand their obligations, adjust contractual relationships in light of those obligations, or otherwise modify our business practices. Congress has considered expanding the scope of the HIPAA privacy and security regulations and we may in the future become subject to them or parallel regulations ourselves, which would require us to make additional expenditures and create additional risks.
In addition, many U.S. states in which we operate have laws that protect the privacy and security of personal information. Certain state laws may be more stringent or broader in scope, or offer greater individual rights, with respect to personal information than federal, international or other state laws, and such laws may differ from each other, which may complicate compliance efforts. For example, the California Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (the “CMIA”), a statute similar to HIPAA that expressly applies to pharmaceutical companies as well as companies that provide certain technologies for processing personal health information, imposes stringent data privacy and security requirements and obligations with respect to the personal health information of California residents. Among other things, the CMIA requires that a pharmaceutical company obtain a signed, written authorization from a patient or company employee in order to disclose his or her personal health information, with limited exceptions, and requires security measures to protect such information. The CMIA authorizes administrative fines and civil penalties of up to $25,000 for willful violations and up to $250,000 if the violation is for purposes of financial gain, as well as criminal fines. In addition, another more recently enacted California law, the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (the “CCPA”), requires us to provide notice to California residents regarding the personal information we collect, use and share and to honor such residents’ privacy rights, including the right to
opt-out
of the sale of their personal information. The CCPA provides for civil penalties for violations, as well as a private right of action for data security breaches that result in the compromise of highly sensitive personal information, which may increase the likelihood of, and risks associated with, data breach litigation. As of January 1, 2023, the CCPA regime will become more complex and enforcement may increase, pursuant to amendments adopted pursuant to the California Privacy Rights Act (the “CPRA”), a ballot initiative that passed in November 2020. The CPRA, among other things, created a new state agency, the California Privacy Protection Agency, to implement and enforce the CCPA and the CPRA. The CPRA also gave California residents new rights to limit uses and disclosures of “sensitive personal information,” including personal health information, and the right to opt out of the sharing of personal information for targeted online advertising. California’s aggressive steps to protect consumer privacy have been followed by similar actions in other states, including Virginia, Colorado, Utah and Connecticut, all of which have enacted CCPA/CPRA-like laws to provide their respective residents with similar rights. New legislation anticipated to be enacted in various other states will continue to shape the data privacy environment nationally. Certain state laws may be more stringent or broader in scope, or offer greater individual rights, with respect to confidential, sensitive and personal information than federal, international or other state laws, and such laws may differ from each other, which may complicate compliance efforts. The effects on our business of this growing body of privacy and data protection laws are potentially significant, and may require us to modify our data processing practices and policies and to incur substantial costs and expenses in an effort to comply.
Outside of the United States, laws, regulations and standards in many jurisdictions apply broadly to the collection, use, retention, security, disclosure, transfer and other processing of personal information. For example, in EEA, the collection and use of personal data is governed by the provisions of the General Data Protection Regulation (the “GDPR”). The GDPR came into effect in May 2018, superseding the European Union Data Protection Directive, and imposing more stringent data privacy and security requirements on companies in relation to the processing of personal data. The GDPR, together with national legislation, regulations and guidelines of the EU member states governing the processing of personal data, impose strict obligations on controllers, including
inter alia
: (i) accountability and transparency requirements, and enhanced requirements for obtaining valid consent; (ii) obligations to consider data protection as any new products or services are developed
 
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and to limit the amount of personal data processed; (iii) obligations to comply with data protection rights of data subjects; and (iv) reporting of certain personal data breaches to the supervisory authority without undue delay (and no later than 72 hours where feasible). The GDPR also prohibits the transfer of personal data from the EEA to countries outside of the EEA unless made to a country deemed to have adequate data privacy laws by the European Commission or a data transfer mechanism has been put in place. The
EU-US
Privacy Shield, but the Privacy Shield was invalidated for international transfers of personal data in July 2020 by the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”).
The CJEU upheld the validity of standard contractual clauses (“SCCs”) as a legal mechanism to transfer personal data but companies relying on SCCs will, subject to additional guidance from regulators in the EEA and the U.K., need to evaluate and implement supplementary measures that provide privacy protections additional to those provided under SCCs. Due to potential legal challenges, it remains to be seen whether SCCs will remain a valid legal mechanism and whether additional means for lawful data transfers will become available. In June 2021, the European Commission adopted new SCCs that are designed to be a mechanism by which entities can transfer personal information out of the EEA to jurisdictions that the European Commission has not found to provide an adequate level of protection. Currently, the SCCs are a valid mechanism to transfer personal information outside of the EEA. The SCCs, however, require parties that rely upon that legal mechanism to comply with additional obligations, such as conducting transfer impact assessments to determine whether additional security measures are necessary to protect the transferred personal information. The new SCCs may increase the legal risks and liabilities under European privacy, data protection, and information security laws. Given that, at present, there are few, if any, viable alternatives to the SCCs, any transfers by us or our vendors of personal information from Europe may not comply with European data protection law, which may increase our exposure to the GDPR’s heightened sanctions for violations of its cross-border data transfer restrictions and may prohibit our transfer of E.U. personal information outside of the E.U. (including clinical trial data), and may adversely impact our operations, product development and ability to provide our products. Moreover, the competent authorities and courts in a number of EU Member States increasingly scrutinize and question the GDPR compliance of processing of personal data by
US-based
entities or entities with links to
US-based
entities, independently of whether personal data is actually transferred outside the EEA. The GDPR authorizes fines for certain violations of up to 4% of global annual revenue or €20 million, whichever is greater. Such fines are in addition to any civil litigation claims by customers and data subjects. European data protection authorities may interpret the GDPR and national laws differently and impose additional requirements, which contributes to the complexity of processing personal data in or from the EEA. In June 2021, the CJEU issued a ruling that expanded the scope of the “one stop shop” under the GDPR. According to the ruling, the competent authorities of EU Member States may, under certain strict conditions, bring claims to their national courts against a company for breaches of the GDPR, including unlawful cross-border processing activities, even such company does not have an establishment in the EU member state in question and the competent authority bringing the claim is not the lead supervisory authority.
Further, as of January 1, 2021, and the expiry of transitional arrangements agreed to between the United Kingdom and EU (
i.e
., following the United Kingdom’s exit from the EU—otherwise known as Brexit), data processing in the United Kingdom is governed by a United Kingdom version of the GDPR (combining the GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018), exposing us to two parallel regimes, each of which potentially authorizes similar fines and other potentially divergent enforcement actions for certain violations. With respect to transfers of personal data from the EEA to the United Kingdom, on June 28, 2021 the European Commission issued an adequacy decision in respect of the United Kingdom’s data protection framework, enabling data transfers from EU member states to the United Kingdom to continue without requiring organizations to put in place contractual or other measures in order to lawfully transfer personal data between the territories. While it is intended to last for at least four years, the European Commission may unilaterally revoke the adequacy decision at any point, and if this occurs it could lead to additional costs and increase our overall risk exposure. Moreover, other countries have also passed or are considering passing laws requiring local data residency or restricting the international transfer of data.
 
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If we or our third-party service providers are unable to properly protect the privacy and security of personal information, or other sensitive data we process in our business, we could be found to have breached our contracts. Further, if we fail to comply with applicable privacy laws, we could face civil and criminal penalties. Enforcement activity from state Attorneys General and agencies such as the California Privacy Protection Agency, the Federal Trade Commission, EU Data Protection Authorities and other regulatory authorities in relation to privacy and cybersecurity matters can result in financial liability and reputational harm, and responses to such enforcement activity can consume significant internal resources. In the United States, the threat of class action lawsuits based on data security breaches or alleged unfair practices adds a further layer of risk. We cannot be sure how these privacy laws and regulations will be interpreted, enforced or applied to our operations. In addition to the risks associated with enforcement activities and potential contractual liabilities, our ongoing efforts to comply with evolving laws and regulations at the federal and state level may be costly and require ongoing modifications to our policies, procedures and systems.
Data privacy remains an evolving landscape at both the domestic and international level, with new laws and regulations being adopted and coming into effect. It is possible that these laws may be interpreted and applied in a manner that is inconsistent with our practices. Significant resources are needed to understand and comply with this changing landscape. Failure to comply with federal, state and international laws regarding privacy and security of personal information could expose us to penalties under such laws. Any such failure to comply with data protection and privacy laws could result in government-imposed fines or orders requiring that we change our practices or unwind certain lines of business, claims for damages or other liabilities, regulatory investigations and enforcement action, litigation and significant costs for remediation, any of which could adversely affect our business. Even absent any findings that we have violated these laws, government investigations into these issues typically require the expenditure of significant resources and generate negative publicity, which could harm our business, financial condition, results of operations or prospects.
Our or our affiliates’ employees, independent contractors, principal investigators, consultants, commercial collaborators, service providers and other vendors or potential collaborators may engage in misconduct or other improper activities, including noncompliance with regulatory standards and requirements, which could harm our results of operations.
We are exposed to the risk that our or our affiliates’ employees and contractors, including principal investigators, CROs, CMOs, consultants, commercial collaborators, service providers and other vendors may engage in misconduct or other illegal activity. Misconduct by these parties could include intentional, reckless or negligent conduct or other unauthorized activities that violate the laws and regulations of the FDA and other similar regulatory bodies, including those laws that require the reporting of true, complete and accurate information to such regulatory bodies; manufacturing and the FDA’s GCP, GLP and GMP standards; federal, state and foreign healthcare fraud and abuse laws and data privacy; or laws that require the true, complete and accurate reporting of financial information or data. In particular, sales, marketing and other business arrangements in the healthcare industry are subject to extensive laws intended to prevent fraud, kickbacks, self-dealing, bribery, corruption, antitrust violations and other abusive practices. These laws may restrict or prohibit a wide range of business activities, including research, manufacturing, distribution, pricing, discounting, marketing and promotion, sales commission, customer incentive programs and other business arrangements. Activities subject to these laws also involve the improper use or misrepresentation of information obtained in the course of clinical trials, creating fraudulent data in our nonclinical studies or clinical trials or illegal misappropriation of drug product, which could result in regulatory sanctions and serious harm to our reputation. It is not always possible to identify and deter employee or third-party misconduct, and the precautions we take to detect and prevent this activity may not be effective in controlling unknown or unmanaged risks or losses or in protecting us from governmental investigations or other actions or lawsuits stemming from a failure to comply with such laws or regulations.
Additionally, we are subject to the risk that a person, including any person who may have engaged in any fraud or misconduct, or government agency could allege such fraud or other misconduct, even if none occurred.
 
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Furthermore, we rely on our CROs and clinical trial sites to adequately report data from our ongoing clinical trials. Moreover, in some instances, our licensing partners conduct clinical trials with respect to product candidates in different territories and we rely on any such partners to share data from their ongoing clinical trials as required under our agreements with such partners. For example, any failure by such parties to adequately report safety signals to us in a timely manner from any such trials may also affect the approvability of our product candidates or cause delays and disruptions for the approval of our product candidates, if at all. If our or our affiliates’ employees, independent contractors, principal investigators, consultants, commercial collaborators, service providers or other vendors are alleged or found to be in violation of any such regulatory standards or requirements, or become subject to a corporate integrity agreement or similar agreement and curtailment of our operations, it could have a significant impact on our business and financial results, including the imposition of significant civil, criminal and administrative penalties, damages, monetary fines, suspension or delay in our clinical trials, possible exclusion from participation in Medicare, Medicaid and other federal healthcare programs, FDA debarment, contractual damages, reputational harm, diminished profits and future earnings, and additional reporting requirements and oversight, any of which could harm our ability to operate our business and our results of operations.
Potential product liability lawsuits against us could cause us to incur substantial liabilities and limit commercialization of our products and, if approved, product candidates.
The sale of our products, including VTAMA, which was approved by the FDA in May 2022 for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adults in the U.S. and the use of our existing product candidates in clinical trials expose us to the risk of product liability claims. Product liability claims might be brought against us by consumers, health care providers, other pharmaceutical companies or others taking or otherwise coming into contact with our products or product candidates. On occasion, large judgments have been awarded in class action lawsuits where drugs have had unanticipated harmful effects. If we cannot successfully defend ourselves against product liability claims, we could incur substantial liability and costs. In addition, regardless of merit or eventual outcome, product liability claims may result in:
 
   
delays in or an inability to commercialize VTAMA, and any future products for which we obtain marketing approval;
 
   
impairment of our business reputation and significant negative media attention;
 
   
delay or termination of clinical trials, or withdrawal of participants from our clinical trials;
 
   
significant costs to defend the related litigation;
 
   
distraction of management’s attention from our primary business;
 
   
substantial monetary awards to patients or other claimants;
 
   
product recalls, withdrawals or labeling, marketing or promotional restrictions;
 
   
decreased demand for our products, existing product candidates or any future product candidate, if approved; and
 
   
loss of revenue.
The product liability insurance we currently carry, and any additional product liability insurance coverage we acquire in the future, may not be sufficient to reimburse us for any expenses or losses we may suffer. Moreover, insurance coverage is becoming increasingly expensive and in the future we may not be able to maintain insurance coverage at a reasonable cost or in sufficient amounts to protect us against losses due to liability. We have acquired insurance coverage which extends to liabilities arising from the sale of our products; however, there is no assurance that we will be able to maintain this insurance coverage on commercially reasonable terms or in adequate amounts or that this coverage will be sufficient to cover any losses arising from any claims related to our products or, if approved, product candidates. A successful product liability claim or series of claims brought against us could adversely affect our results of operations and business, including preventing or limiting the commercialization of our products and, if approved, product candidates.
 
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If we fail to comply with environmental, health and safety laws and regulations, we could become subject to fines or penalties or incur costs that could harm our business.
We are subject to numerous environmental, health and safety laws and regulations, including those governing laboratory procedures and the handling, use, storage, treatment and disposal of hazardous materials and wastes. Certain of our operations may involve the use of hazardous and flammable materials, including chemicals and biological materials, and may also produce hazardous waste products. We generally contract with third parties for the disposal of these materials and wastes. We cannot eliminate the risk of contamination or injury from these materials. In the event of contamination or injury resulting from our use of hazardous materials, we could be held liable for any resulting damages, and any liability could exceed our resources. We also could incur significant costs associated with civil or criminal fines and penalties for failure to comply with such laws and regulations.
Although we maintain workers’ compensation insurance to cover us for costs and expenses we may incur due to injuries to our employees resulting from the use of hazardous materials, this insurance may not provide adequate coverage against potential liabilities. We do not maintain insurance for environmental liability or toxic tort claims that may be asserted against us in connection with our storage or disposal of biological, hazardous or radioactive materials.
In addition, we may incur substantial costs in order to comply with current or future environmental, health and safety laws and regulations. These current or future laws and regulations may impair our research, development or production efforts. Our failure to comply with these laws and regulations also may result in substantial fines, penalties or other sanctions.
We or the third parties upon whom we depend may be adversely affected by earthquakes, outbreak of disease or other natural disasters and our business continuity and disaster recovery plans may not adequately protect us from a serious disaster.
Earthquakes or other natural disasters could severely disrupt our operations, and have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations, financial condition and prospects. If a natural disaster, power outage or other event occurred that prevented us from using all or a significant portion of our offices, that damaged critical infrastructure, such as the manufacturing facilities of our third-party CMOs, or that otherwise disrupted operations, it may be difficult or, in certain cases, impossible for us to continue our business for a substantial period of time. The disaster recovery and business continuity plans we have in place currently are limited and are unlikely to prove adequate in the event of a serious disaster or similar event. We may incur substantial expenses as a result of the limited nature of our disaster recovery and business continuity plans, which, particularly when taken together with our limited earthquake and flood insurance coverage, could have a material adverse effect on our business.
The increasing use of social media platforms presents new risks and challenges.
Social media is increasingly being used to communicate about our research, products, product candidates, investigational medicines and the diseases our products, product candidates and investigational medicines are being developed to treat. Social media practices in the biopharmaceutical industry continue to evolve and regulations relating to such use are not always clear. This evolution creates uncertainty and risk of noncompliance with regulations applicable to our business, resulting in potential regulatory actions against us. For example, patients may use social media channels to comment on their experience in an ongoing blinded clinical study or to report an alleged adverse event. When such disclosures occur, there is a risk that we fail to monitor and comply with applicable adverse event reporting obligations or we may not be able to defend our business or the public’s legitimate interests in the face of the political and market pressures generated by social media due to restrictions on what we may say about our development candidates and investigational medicines. There is also a risk of inappropriate disclosure of sensitive information or negative or inaccurate posts or
 
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comments about us on any social networking website. Furthermore, our employees, affiliates and/or business partners may use social media for their personal use, and their activities on social media or in other forums could result in adverse publicity for us. Any negative publicity as a result of social media posts, whether or not such claims are accurate, could adversely impact us. If any of these events were to occur or we otherwise fail to comply with applicable regulations, we could incur liability, face regulatory actions, or incur other harm to our business. The use of social media also creates additional risks in the EEA and the UK where promotion of prescription-only medicines to patients and the general public is strictly prohibited. Social media content that is generated, shared or liked by our company or our directors, employees, staff or other representatives may potentially be perceived or construed as constituting prohibited promotion of prescription-only medicinal products and trigger enforcement and penalties. This is an area of increased scrutiny in both the EEA and the UK.
The United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union may adversely impact our ability to obtain regulatory approvals of our products and product candidates in the European Union and may require us to incur additional expenses in order to develop, manufacture and commercialize our products and product candidates in the European Union.
We are centrally managed and controlled in the United Kingdom. The United Kingdom formally exited the EU, commonly referred to as Brexit, on January 31, 2020. Under the terms of its departure, the United Kingdom entered a transition period (the “Transition Period”), during which it continued to follow all EU rules. The Transition Period ended on December 31, 2020. A trade and cooperation agreement which outlines the trading relationship between the U.K. and E.U. now that the transition period has concluded, applied provisionally from January 1, 2021 and formally entered into force on May 1, 2021.
There is considerable uncertainty resulting from a lack of precedent and the complexity of the United Kingdom and the EU’s intertwined legal regimes as to how Brexit (following the Transition Period) will impact the life sciences industry in the UK and Europe, including our company, including with respect to ongoing or future clinical trials. The impact will largely depend on the model and means by which the United Kingdom’s relationship with the EU is governed post-Brexit and the extent to which the United Kingdom chooses to further diverge from the EU regulatory framework. For example, following the Transition Period, Great Britain is no longer covered by the centralized procedures for obtaining
EU-wide
marketing authorizations and our products will therefore require a separate marketing authorization to allow us to market such products in Great Britain. By way of additional example, the EU Clinical Trials Regulations which govern the conduct of clinical trials in the E.U. entered into application in January 2022 and consequently do not apply in the U.K. It is unclear as to whether the relevant authorities in the EU and the United Kingdom are adequately prepared for the additional administrative burden caused by Brexit. Any delay in obtaining, or an inability to obtain, any marketing approvals, as a result of Brexit or otherwise, would prevent us from or delay us commercializing our products and, if approved, product candidates in the United Kingdom and/or the EEA and restrict our ability to generate revenue and achieve and sustain profitability. In the short term, following the expiry of the Transition Period there have been disrupted import and export processes due to a lack of administrative processing capacity by the respective United Kingdom and EU customs agencies that, if continued, may delay time-sensitive shipments and may negatively impact our product supply chain. Further, under current plans, orphan designation in the United Kingdom (or Great Britain, depending on whether there is a prior centralized marketing authorization in the EEA) following Brexit is to be based on the prevalence of the condition in Great Britain as opposed to the current position where prevalence in the EU is the determinant. It is therefore possible that conditions that are currently designated as orphan conditions in the United Kingdom will no longer be and that conditions are not currently designated as orphan conditions in the European Union will be designated as such in the United Kingdom.
If any of these outcomes occur, we may be forced to restrict or delay efforts to seek regulatory approval in the United Kingdom and/or EEA for our products and product candidates, which could significantly and materially harm our business. There is a degree of uncertainty regarding the overall impact that Brexit will have on (i) the marketing of pharmaceutical products, (ii) the process to obtain regulatory approval in the United Kingdom for product candidates or (iii) the award of exclusivities that are normally part of the EU legal framework (for instance Supplementary Protection Certificates, Pediatric Extensions or Orphan exclusivity).
 
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Brexit may also result in a reduction of funding to the EMA once the United Kingdom no longer makes financial contributions to European institutions, such as the EMA. If funding to the EMA is so reduced, it could create delays in the EMA issuing regulatory approvals for our products and product candidates and, accordingly, have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations or prospects.
In addition, we may be required to pay taxes or duties or be subjected to other hurdles in connection with the importation of our products or product candidates into the EU, or we may incur expenses in establishing a manufacturing facility in the EU in order to circumvent such hurdles. If any of these outcomes occur, we may be forced to restrict or delay efforts to seek regulatory approval in the United Kingdom or the EU for our products and product candidates, or incur significant additional expenses to operate our business, which could significantly and materially harm or delay our ability to generate revenues or achieve profitability of our business.
As a result of Brexit, other EU Member States may seek to conduct referenda with respect to their continuing membership with the EU. Given these possibilities and others we may not anticipate, as well as the absence of comparable precedent, it is unclear what financial, regulatory and legal implications the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the EU will have and how such withdrawal will affect us, and the full extent to which our business could be adversely affected.
Risks Related to Our Intellectual Property
If we are unable to obtain and maintain patent and other intellectual property protection for our technology, products and product candidates, or if the scope of the intellectual property protection obtained is not sufficiently broad, we may not be able to compete effectively in our markets.
We rely, and will continue to rely, upon a combination of patents, trademarks, trade secret protection and confidentiality agreements with employees, consultants, collaborators, advisors and other third parties to protect the intellectual property related to our brand, current and future drug development programs, products and product candidates. Our success depends in large part on our ability to obtain and maintain patent protection in the United States and other countries with respect to our current and future products and product candidates. We seek to protect our proprietary position by
in-licensing
or acquiring intellectual property and filing patent applications in the United States and abroad related to our current and future development programs, products and product candidates, defending our intellectual property rights against third-party challenges and enforcing our intellectual property rights to prevent third-party infringement. The patent prosecution process is expensive and time-consuming, and we may not be able to file and prosecute all necessary or desirable patent applications at a reasonable cost or in a timely manner. Furthermore, there is always a risk that our licensed or owned issued patents and any pending and future patent applications may not protect our products or product candidates, in whole or in part, and may not effectively prevent others from commercializing competitive products or product candidates, or that an alteration to our products or product candidates or processes may provide sufficient basis for a competitor to avoid infringing our patent claims. The risks associated with patent rights generally apply to patent rights that we
in-license
now or in the future, as well as patent rights that we may own now or in the future.
It is also possible that we will fail to identify patentable aspects of our research and development output before it is too late to obtain patent protection. Although we enter into
non-disclosure
and confidentiality agreements with parties who have access to confidential or patentable aspects of their research and development output, such as employees, corporate collaborators, outside scientific collaborators, CROs, contract manufacturers, consultants, advisors and other third parties, any of these parties may breach the agreements and disclose such output before a patent application is filed, thereby jeopardizing our ability to obtain patent protection. In addition, while we have
pre-publication
review procedures in effect, premature or inadvertent publication of potentially patentable subject matter could preclude our ability to obtain patent protection. We may choose not to seek patent protection for certain innovations, products or product candidates and may choose
 
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not to pursue patent protection in certain jurisdictions, and under the laws of certain jurisdictions, patents or other intellectual property rights may be unavailable or limited in scope and, in any event, any patent protection we obtain may be limited. As a result, our products and, if approved, product candidates may not be protected by patents in all jurisdictions. We generally apply for patents in those countries where we intend to make, have made, use, offer for sale, or sell products and product candidates and where we assess the risk of infringement to justify the cost of seeking patent protection. However, we do not seek protection in all countries where we intend to sell products and, if approved, product candidates and we may not accurately predict all the countries where patent protection would ultimately be desirable. If we fail to timely file a patent application in any such country or major market, we may be precluded from doing so at a later date. The patent applications that we own or
in-license
may fail to result in issued patents with claims that cover products or product candidates in the United States or in other countries. We may also inadvertently make statements to regulatory agencies during the regulatory approval process that may be inconsistent with positions that have been taken during prosecution of our patents, which may result in such patents being narrowed, invalidated or held unenforceable in enforcement and other adversarial proceedings.
The patent applications that we own or
in-license
may fail to result in issued patents with claims that cover our current and future products or product candidates in the United States or in other countries. Our pending patent applications at the Patent Cooperation Treaty (the “PCT”) are not eligible to become issued patents until, among other things, we file a national stage patent application within 30 months in the countries in which we seek patent protection. If we do not timely file any national stage patent applications, we may lose our priority date with respect to our PCT patent applications and any patent protection on the inventions disclosed in such PCT patent applications. We cannot guarantee any current or future patents will provide us with any meaningful protection or competitive advantage. For example, any issued patents might not cover the pharmaceutical composition of the product or product candidate that is ultimately commercialized. There is no assurance that all of the potentially relevant prior art relating to our patents and patent applications has been found, which can prevent a patent from issuing from a pending patent application or be used to invalidate an issued patent. The examination process may require us to narrow our claims, which may limit the scope of patent protection that we may ultimately obtain. Even if patents do successfully issue and even if such patents cover our current and future products and product candidates, third parties may challenge their validity, enforceability or scope, which may result in such patents being narrowly construed, invalidated, or held unenforceable, any of which could limit our ability to prevent competitors and other third parties from developing and marketing similar products or product candidates or limit the length of terms of patent protection we may have for our products, product candidates and technologies. Other companies may also design around technologies we have patented, licensed or developed. In addition, the issuance of a patent does not give us the right to practice the patented invention. Third parties may have blocking patents that could prevent us from marketing products or product candidates, or practicing our own patented technology, or impose a substantial royalty burden to do so. Any successful opposition to these patents or any other patents owned by or licensed to us could deprive us of rights necessary for the successful commercialization of any products or, if approved, product candidates. Further, if we encounter delays in regulatory approvals, the period of time during which we could market a product or product candidate under patent protection could be reduced. If any of our patents are challenged, invalidated, circumvented by third parties or otherwise limited or expire prior to the commercialization of our products or, if approved, product candidates, and if we do not own or have exclusive rights to other enforceable patents protecting our products, product candidates or other technologies, competitors and other third parties could market products or product candidates and use processes that are substantially similar to, or superior to, ours and our business would suffer.
 
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If the patent applications we hold or have
in-licensed
with respect to our products or product candidates fail to issue, if their breadth or strength of protection is threatened, or if they fail to provide meaningful exclusivity for our current and future products or product candidates, it could dissuade companies from collaborating with us to develop product candidates, and threaten our ability to commercialize our products. Any such outcome could have a materially adverse effect on our business. Our pending patent applications cannot be enforced against third parties practicing the technology claimed in such applications unless and until a patent issues from such applications.
The patent position of biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies generally is highly uncertain, involves complex legal and factual questions and has in recent years been the subject of much litigation. The standards that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (the “USPTO”) and its counterparts in other countries use to grant patents are not always applied predictably or uniformly. In addition, the laws of countries other than the United States may not protect our rights to the same extent as the laws of the United States, and many companies have encountered significant problems in protecting and defending such rights in such jurisdictions. For example, European patent law restricts the patentability of methods of treatment of the human body more than United States law does.
Other parties have developed technologies that may be related or competitive to our own technologies and such parties may have filed or may file patent applications, or may have received or may receive patents, claiming inventions that may overlap or conflict with those claimed in our own or licensed patent applications or issued patents. Furthermore, publications of discoveries in scientific literature often lag behind the actual discoveries, and patent applications in the United States and other jurisdictions are typically not published until 18 months after filing, or in some cases not at all. Therefore, we cannot know with certainty whether we or our licensors were the first to make the inventions claimed in our owned or licensed patents or pending patent applications, or that we or our licensors were the first to file for patent protection of such inventions. As a result, the issuance, scope, validity, enforceability and commercial value of our patent rights are highly uncertain. Our pending and future patent applications may not result in patents being issued which protect our technology, products or product candidates, in whole or in part, or which effectively prevent others from commercializing competitive technologies, products and product candidates. Changes in either the patent laws or interpretation of the patent laws in the United States and other countries may diminish the value of our patents or narrow the scope of our patent protection.
Patent reform legislation in the United States, including the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (“the Leahy-Smith Act”), could increase those uncertainties and costs surrounding the prosecution of our patent applications and the enforcement or defense of our issued patents. The Leahy-Smith Act was signed into law on September 16, 2011 and includes a number of significant changes to U.S. patent law. These include provisions that affect the way patent applications are prosecuted, redefine prior art and provide more efficient and cost-effective avenues for competitors to challenge the validity of patents. These include allowing third-party submission of prior art to the USPTO during patent prosecution and additional procedures to challenge the validity of a patent by USPTO administered post-grant proceedings, including post-grant review,
inter partes
review, and derivation proceedings. After March 15, 2013, under the Leahy-Smith Act, the United States transitioned to a first inventor to file system in which, assuming that the other statutory requirements are met, the first inventor to file a patent application will be entitled to the patent on an invention regardless of whether a third-party was the first to invent the claimed invention. The Leahy-Smith Act and its implementation could increase the uncertainties and costs surrounding the prosecution of our patent applications, our ability to obtain future patents, and the enforcement or defense of our issued patents, all of which could harm our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
The issuance of a patent is not conclusive as to its inventorship, scope, validity or enforceability, and our owned and licensed patents may be challenged in the courts or patent offices in the United States and abroad. We are currently and may in the future be subject to third-party
pre-issuance
submissions of prior art to the USPTO or its equivalents and we or our licensors have in the past, and may in the future, become involved in opposition,
 
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derivation, reexamination,
inter partes
review, post-grant review or interference proceedings in the U.S. or in other jurisdictions challenging our patent rights or the patent rights of others. A third-party may also claim that our owned or licensed patent rights are invalid or unenforceable in a litigation. For example, three U.S. patents (U.S. Patent Nos. 8,058,069, 9,364,435 and 9,404,127) relating to lipid nanoparticle molar ratios and the aggregation of lipid nanoparticles that Genevant Sciences GmbH, as assignee of Genevant Sciences Ltd. (“Genevant”), exclusively licensed from Arbutus Biopharma Corp. (“Arbutus”) were the subject of
inter partes
review proceedings brought by Moderna Therapeutics, Inc. (“Moderna”) before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board of the USPTO (“PTAB”). The PTAB upheld all claims of U.S. Patent No. 8,058,069, invalidated some of the claims of U.S. Patent No. 9,364,435 and invalidated all claims of U.S. Patent No. 9,404,127. The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (the “Federal Circuit”) heard oral arguments with respect to U.S. Patent Nos. 8,058,069 and 9,364,435 in October 2021. On December 1, 2021, the Federal Circuit issued decisions in both proceedings. The Federal Circuit affirmed the PTAB’s decision that upheld all claims of U.S. Patent 8,058,069. The Federal Circuit affirmed the PTAB’s decision invalidating certain claims of U.S. Patent 9,364,435 but dismissed Moderna’s appeal with respect to those claims that the PTAB upheld for lack of standing. The Federal Circuit vacated and remanded the PTAB’s decision on U.S. Patent No. 9,494,127. The PTAB’s decision with respect to U.S. Patent No. 9,494,127 had been held in administrative abeyance pending a review following a recent Supreme Court ruling in an unrelated case. The matter is now pending before the Federal Circuit and briefing is complete. We expect that the Federal Circuit will schedule oral arguments to take place later this calendar year. Additionally, one European patent (EU patent no. EP2279254) relating to lipid nanoparticle molar ratios that Genevant exclusively licensed from Arbutus is the subject of an opposition proceeding brought by Merck Sharp & Dohme Corporation and Moderna at the European Patent Office Opposition Division. Genevant may commence litigation at any time to enforce its patent rights against infringers.
The outcome following legal assertions of invalidity and unenforceability is unpredictable. An adverse determination in any such submission, proceeding or litigation could reduce the scope of, or invalidate, our patent rights, allow third parties to commercialize our technology, products or product candidates and compete directly with us, without payment to us, result in our inability to manufacture or commercialize products and, if approved, product candidates without infringing third-party patent rights or result in our breach of agreements pursuant to which we license such rights to our collaborators or licensees. In addition, if the breadth or strength of protection provided by our patents and patent applications is threatened, it could dissuade companies from collaborating with us to license, develop or commercialize current or future products or product candidates. Such challenges may result in loss of exclusivity or freedom to operate or in patent claims being narrowed, invalidated or held unenforceable, in whole or in part, which could limit our ability to stop others from using or commercializing similar or identical technology, products and product candidates, or limit the duration of the patent protection of our technology, products and product candidates. Such challenges also may result in substantial cost and require significant time from our scientists and management, even if the eventual outcome is favorable to us. Any of the foregoing could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
Even if they are unchallenged, our owned and licensed patents and pending patent applications, if issued, may not provide us with any meaningful protection or prevent competitors from designing around our patent claims to circumvent our owned or licensed patents by developing similar or alternative technologies or therapeutics in a
non-infringing
manner. For example, a third-party may develop a competitive product that provides benefits similar to one or more of our products or product candidates but that falls outside the scope of our patent protection. Moreover, patents have a limited lifespan. In the United States, the natural expiration of a patent is generally 20 years after it is filed. Various extensions may be available; however the life of a patent, and the protection it affords, are limited. Without patent protection for our current or future products and product candidates, it may be open to competition from generic versions of such products or product candidates. Given the amount of time required for the development, testing and regulatory review of new product candidates, patents protecting such candidates might expire before or shortly after such candidates are commercialized. As a result, our owned and licensed patent portfolio may not provide us with sufficient rights to exclude others from
 
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commercializing product candidates similar or identical to our own and, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
Patent terms and their scope may be inadequate to protect our competitive position on current and future products and product candidates for an adequate amount of time.
Patents have a limited lifespan. In the United States, if all maintenance fees are timely paid, the natural expiration of a patent is generally 20 years from its earliest U.S.
non-provisional
filing date. In certain instances, the patent term may be adjusted to add additional days to compensate for delays incurred by the USPTO in issuing the patent. Also, the patent term may be extended for a period of time to compensate for at least a portion of the time a product or product candidate was undergoing FDA regulatory review. However, the life of a patent, and the protection it affords, are limited. Even if patents covering products or product candidates are obtained, once the patent life has expired, we may be open to competition from other products or product candidates, including generics or biosimilars. Given the amount of time required for the development, testing and regulatory review of new products and product candidates, patents protecting such candidates might expire before or shortly after such candidates are commercialized. For example, the patent covering the use of VTAMA as an active ingredient to treat psoriasis and atopic dermatitis, but not limited to any formulation, expired in December 2020. As a result, our owned and licensed patent portfolio may not provide us with sufficient rights to exclude others from commercializing product candidates similar or identical to our products and product candidates.
We do not currently and may not in the future own or license any issued composition of matter patents covering certain of our products or product candidates, including VTAMA, and we cannot be certain that any of our other issued patents will provide adequate protection for such products or product candidates.
Composition-of-matter
patents on the active pharmaceutical ingredient (“API”) in prescription drug products are generally considered to be the strongest form of intellectual property protection for drug products because those types of patents provide protection without regard to any particular method of use or manufacture or formulation of the API used. While we generally seek composition of matter patents for our products and product candidates, such patents may not be available for all of our products and product candidates. For example, we do not own or have a license to any issued composition of matter patents in the United States or any other jurisdiction with respect to VTAMA. Instead, we rely on an issued U.S. patent claiming topical formulations of VTAMA, including the formulation studied in Phase 3 trials and approved by the FDA, and an issued U.S. patent covering methods of using the patented topical formulations to treat inflammatory diseases, including psoriasis and atopic dermatitis. The formulation and
method-of-use
patents have natural expiration dates in 2036. We additionally rely on a drug substance (“DS”) patent covering the high purity commercial crystal form of the DS, the commercial DS synthesis and several novel intermediates that are formed in the synthesis, which has a natural expiration date in 2038.
Method-of-use
patents protect the use of a product for the specified method and formulation patents cover formulations of the API. These types of patents do not prevent a competitor or other third-party from developing or marketing an identical product for an indication that is outside the scope of the patented method or from developing a different formulation that is outside the scope of the patented formulation. Moreover, with respect to
method-of-use
patents, even if competitors or other third parties do not actively promote their product for our targeted indications or uses for which we may obtain patents, physicians may recommend that patients use these products
off-label,
or patients may do so themselves. Although
off-label
use may infringe or contribute to the infringement of
method-of-use
patents, the practice is common, and this type of infringement is difficult to prevent or prosecute.
Our owned and licensed patents and pending patent applications, if issued, may not adequately protect our intellectual property or prevent competitors or others from designing around our patent claims to circumvent our owned or licensed patents by developing similar or alternative technologies or therapeutics in a
non-infringing
manner. If the breadth or strength of protection provided by the patents and patent applications we own or license
 
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with respect to our products and product candidates is not sufficient to impede such competition or is otherwise threatened, it could dissuade companies from collaborating with us to develop, and threaten our ability to commercialize, our products and, if approved, product candidates. Any of the foregoing could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
If we do not obtain protection under the Hatch-Waxman Amendments by extending the patent term, our business may be harmed.
Our commercial success will largely depend on our ability to obtain and maintain patent and other intellectual property in the United States and other countries with respect to our proprietary technology, products, product candidates and our target indications. Given the amount of time required for the development, testing and regulatory review of products and product candidates, patents protecting our products and product candidates might expire before or shortly after such candidate begins to be commercialized. We expect to seek extensions of patent terms in the United States and, if available, in other countries where we are prosecuting patents.
Depending upon the timing, duration and specifics of FDA marketing approval of product candidates, one or more of our U.S. patents may be eligible for a limited patent term extension (“PTE”) under the Drug Price Competition and Patent Term Restoration Act of 1984, referred to as the Hatch-Waxman Amendments. The Hatch-Waxman Amendments permit a patent restoration term of up to five years beyond the normal expiration of the patent as compensation for patent term lost during development and the FDA regulatory review process, which is limited to the approved indication (and potentially additional indications approved during the period of extension) covered by the patent. This extension cannot extend the remaining term of a patent beyond a total of 14 years from the date of product approval and is limited to only one patent that covers the approved product, the approved use of the product, or a method of manufacturing the product. However, the applicable authorities, including the FDA and the USPTO in the United States, and any equivalent regulatory authority in other countries, may not agree with our assessment of whether such extensions are available, and may refuse to grant extensions to our patents, or may grant more limited extensions than we request. We may not be granted an extension because of, for example, failing to apply within applicable deadlines, failing to apply prior to expiration of relevant patents or otherwise failing to satisfy applicable requirements. Moreover, the applicable time-period or the scope of patent protection afforded could be less than we request. Even if we are able to obtain an extension, the patent term may still expire before or shortly after we receive FDA marketing approval for a given product or product candidate.
If we are unable to extend the expiration date of our existing patents or obtain new patents with longer expiry dates, our competitors may be able to take advantage of our investment in development and clinical trials by referencing our clinical and preclinical data to obtain approval of competing product candidates following our patent expiration and launch their product earlier than might otherwise be the case.
Obtaining and maintaining our patent protection depends on compliance with various procedural, document submission, fee payment and other requirements imposed by governmental patent agencies, and our patent protection could be reduced or eliminated as a result of
non-compliance
with these requirements.
Periodic maintenance fees on any issued patent are due to be paid to the USPTO and other patent agencies in other jurisdictions in several stages over the lifetime of the patent. The USPTO and various national or international patent agencies require compliance with a number of procedural, documentary, fee payment and other similar provisions during the patent application process. In certain circumstances, we rely on our licensing partners to pay these fees due to U.S. and
non-U.S.
patent agencies and to take the necessary action to comply with these requirements with respect to our licensed intellectual property. While an inadvertent lapse can in many cases be cured by payment of a late fee or by other means in accordance with the applicable rules, there are situations in which noncompliance can result in abandonment or lapse of the patent or patent application, resulting in partial or complete loss of patent rights in the relevant jurisdiction.
Non-compliance
events that could result in abandonment or lapse of patent rights include, but are not limited to, failure to timely file national and
 
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regional stage patent applications based on our international patent applications, failure to respond to official actions within prescribed time limits,
non-payment
of fees and failure to properly legalize and submit formal documents. If we or our licensors fail to maintain the patents and patent applications covering our current and future products and product candidates, our competitors might be able to enter the market earlier than anticipated, which would have an adverse effect on our business.
We rely on certain
in-licensed
patents and other intellectual property rights in connection with our development of certain products and product candidates and, if we fail to comply with our obligations under our existing and any future intellectual property licenses with third parties, we could lose license rights that are important to our business.
Our ability to commercialize products and develop and eventually, if approved, commercialize product candidates is dependent on licenses to patent rights and other intellectual property granted to it by third parties. Further, development and commercialization of our current and future products and product candidates may require us to enter into additional license or collaboration agreements.
Our current license agreements impose, and future agreements may impose, various development, diligence, commercialization and other obligations on us and require us to meet development timelines, or to exercise commercially reasonable efforts to develop and commercialize licensed products, in order to maintain the licenses. If we fail to comply with our obligations under these licenses, our licensors may have the right to terminate these license agreements, in which event we may not be able to market our products and product candidates. Termination of any of our license agreements or reduction or elimination of our licensed rights may also result in our having to negotiate new or reinstated licenses with less favorable terms. Additionally, certain provisions in our intellectual property agreements may be susceptible to multiple interpretations. The resolution of any contract interpretation disagreement that may arise could affect the scope of our rights to the relevant intellectual property or technology, or affect financial or other obligations under the relevant agreement, either of which could harm our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects. For example, disputes may arise with respect to our current or future licensing agreement include disputes relating to:
 
   
the scope of rights granted under the license agreement and other interpretation-related issues;
 
   
our financial or other obligations under the license agreement;
 
   
the extent to which our technology, products or product candidates infringe on intellectual property of the licensor that is not subject to the licensing agreement;
 
   
the sublicensing of patent and other rights;
 
   
our diligence obligations under the license agreements and what activities satisfy those diligence obligations;
 
   
the inventorship or ownership of inventions and
know-how
resulting from the joint creation or use of intellectual property by our licensors and us and our partners; and
 
   
the priority of invention of patented technology.
If disputes over intellectual property that we have licensed prevent or impair our ability to maintain our current licensing arrangements on acceptable terms, we may be unable to successfully develop and commercialize our products and product candidates. If our licenses are terminated, we may lose our rights to develop and market our technology, products and product candidates, lose patent protection for our products, product candidates and technology, experience significant delays in the development and commercialization of our products and product candidates, or incur liability for damages. In addition, we may need to obtain additional licenses from our licensors and, in connection with obtaining such licenses, we may agree to amend our existing licenses in a manner that may be more favorable to the licensors, including by agreeing to terms that could enable third parties, including our competitors, to receive licenses to a portion of the intellectual property that is subject to our existing licenses and to compete with our products and product candidates.
 
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Furthermore, if our licenses are terminated, or if the underlying patents fail to provide the intended exclusivity, competitors or other third parties would have the freedom to seek regulatory approval of, and to market, products identical or competitive to ours and we may be required to cease our development and commercialization of certain of our products and product candidates. Moreover, if disputes over intellectual property that we license prevent or impair our ability to maintain other licensing arrangements on commercially acceptable terms, we may be unable to successfully develop and commercialize the affected products or product candidates. In addition, certain of these license agreements, may not be assignable by us without the consent of the respective licensor, which may have an adverse effect on our ability to engage in certain transactions. Any of the foregoing could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
In addition, in some circumstances, we may not have the right to control the preparation, filing and prosecution of patent applications, or to maintain or enforce the patents, covering technology that it licenses from third parties. Therefore, we cannot be certain that these or other patents will be prosecuted, maintained and enforced in a manner consistent with the best interests of our business. Additionally, we may not have sufficient ability to provide input into the patent prosecution, maintenance and defense process with respect to such patents, and our licensors may fail to take the steps that we believe are necessary or desirable in order to obtain, maintain, defend and enforce the licensed patents. If our current or future licensors or collaboration partners fail to obtain, maintain, defend, protect or enforce any patents or patent applications licensed to us, our rights to such patents and patent applications may be reduced or eliminated and our right to develop and commercialize products and product candidates that are the subject of such licensed rights could be adversely affected.
Furthermore, certain of our current and future licenses may not provide us with exclusive rights to use the licensed intellectual property and technology, or may not provide us with rights to use such intellectual property and technology in all relevant fields of use and in all territories in which we may wish to develop or commercialize our technology, products and product candidates in the future. The intellectual property portfolio licensed to us by our licensors at least in some respects, may therefore be used by such licensors or licensed to third parties, and such third parties may have certain enforcement rights with respect to such intellectual property. For example, Immunovant does not have rights to develop, manufacture, use or commercialize batoclimab or file or enforce patents relating to these assets in territories other than the United States, Canada, Mexico, the EU, the U.K., Switzerland, the Middle East, North Africa and Latin America, as such rights in other jurisdictions have been retained by HanAll Biopharma Co., Ltd. (“HanAll”) or licensed by HanAll to third parties. Additionally, Dermavant does not have the right to develop, manufacture, use or commercialize VTAMA in China, including Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan, as such rights were retained by Welichem Biotech Inc. or licensed to third parties. Patents licensed to us could be put at risk of being invalidated or interpreted narrowly in litigation filed by or against our licensors or another licensee or in administrative proceedings brought by or against our licensors or another licensee in response to such litigation or for other reasons. As a result, we may not be able to prevent competitors or other third parties from developing and commercializing competitive products, including in territories covered by our licenses.
Third-party claims or litigation alleging infringement, misappropriation or other violations of third-party patents or other proprietary rights or seeking to invalidate our patents or other proprietary rights, may delay or prevent the development and commercialization of our current and future products and product candidates.
Our commercial success depends in part on our avoidance of infringement, misappropriation and other violations of the patents and proprietary rights of third parties. However, our research, development and commercialization activities may be subject to claims that we infringe, misappropriate or otherwise violate patents or other intellectual property rights owned or controlled by third parties. Our competitors or other third parties may assert infringement claims against us, alleging that our products or product candidates are covered by their patents. We cannot be certain that we do not infringe existing patents or that we will not infringe patents that may be granted in the future. There is a substantial amount of litigation, both within and outside the United States, involving patent and other intellectual property rights in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries,
 
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including patent infringement lawsuits, interferences, derivation and administrative law proceedings,
inter partes
review, and post-grant review before the USPTO, as well as oppositions and similar processes in other jurisdictions. Numerous U.S. and
non-U.S.
issued patents and pending patent applications, which are owned by third parties, exist in the fields in which we and our collaborators are developing product candidates. As the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries expand and more patents are issued, and as we gain greater visibility, the risk increases that our products, product candidates or other business activities may be subject to claims of infringement of the patent and other proprietary rights of third parties. Third parties may assert that we are infringing their patents or employing their proprietary technology without authorization. There may be third-party patents or patent applications with claims to materials, formulations, methods of manufacture or methods for treatment related to the use or manufacture of our products or product candidates. We could also be required to pay damages, which could be significant, including treble damages and attorneys’ fees if we are found to have willfully infringed such patents.
Additionally, because patent applications can take many years to issue, there may be currently pending patent applications which may later result in issued patents that our products or product candidates may infringe. In addition, third parties may obtain patents in the future and claim that use of our technologies infringes upon these patents. If any third-party patents were held by a court of competent jurisdiction to cover any of our products or product candidates, the holders of any such patents may be able to block our ability to commercialize such products or, if approved, product candidates, unless we obtained a license under the applicable patents, or until such patents expire. Similarly, if any third-party patent were held by a court of competent jurisdiction to cover aspects of our formulations, processes for manufacture or methods of use, including combination therapy, the holders of any such patent may be able to block our ability to develop and commercialize the applicable product or, if approved, product candidate, unless we obtained a license or until such patent expires. In either case, such a license may not be available on commercially reasonable terms or at all. Claims that we have misappropriated the confidential information or trade secrets of third parties could have a similar negative impact on our business. In addition, we may be subject to claims that we are infringing other intellectual property rights, such as trademarks or copyrights, or misappropriating the trade secrets of others, and to the extent that our employees, consultants or contractors use intellectual property or proprietary information owned by others in their work for us, disputes may arise as to the rights in related or resulting
know-how
and inventions, which could be time-consuming and divert the attention of senior management.
Parties making claims against us may obtain injunctive or other equitable relief, which could effectively block our ability to further develop and commercialize one or more of our products or, if approved, product candidates. Defense of these claims, regardless of their merit, would involve substantial litigation expense and would be a substantial diversion of employee resources from our business. In the event of a successful infringement or other intellectual property claim against it, we may have to pay substantial damages, including treble damages and attorneys’ fees for willful infringement, obtain one or more licenses from third parties, pay royalties or redesign our affected products or product candidates, which may be impossible or require substantial time and monetary expenditure. We cannot predict whether any such license would be available at all or whether it would be available on commercially reasonable terms. Furthermore, even in the absence of litigation, we may need to obtain licenses from third parties to advance our research or allow commercialization of our products or, if approved, product candidates, and we have done so from time to time. We may fail to obtain any of these licenses at a reasonable cost or on reasonable terms, if at all. In that event, we would be unable to further develop and commercialize one or more of our products or, if approved, product candidates, which could harm our business significantly. We cannot provide any assurances that third-party patents do not exist which might be enforced against our products or product candidates, resulting in either an injunction prohibiting our sales, or, with respect to our sales, an obligation on our part to pay royalties and/or other forms of compensation to third parties.
Some of our competitors may be able to sustain the costs of complex intellectual property litigation more effectively than we can because the competitors have substantially greater financial and other resources. In addition, intellectual property litigation, regardless of its outcome, may cause negative publicity, adversely
 
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impact prospective customers, cause product shipment delays or prohibit us from manufacturing, marketing or otherwise commercializing our products or, if approved, product candidates. Any uncertainties resulting from the initiation and continuation of any litigation could adversely impact our ability to raise additional funds or otherwise harm our business, results of operation, financial condition or cash flows.
Furthermore, because of the substantial amount of discovery required in connection with intellectual property litigation, there is a risk that some of our confidential information could be compromised by disclosure during this type of litigation. There could also be public announcements of the results of hearings, motions or other interim proceedings or developments, which could adversely impact the price of our Common Shares.
We may not identify relevant third-party patents or may incorrectly interpret the relevance, scope or expiration of a third-party patent, which might harm our ability to develop and market our products and product candidates.
We cannot guarantee that any of our or our licensors’ patent searches or analyses, including the identification of relevant patents, the scope of patent claims or the expiration of relevant patents, are complete or thorough, nor can we be certain that we have identified each and every third-party patent and pending application in the United States and abroad that is or may be relevant to or necessary for the commercialization of products or product candidates in any jurisdiction. Patent applications in the United States and elsewhere are not published until approximately 18 months after the earliest filing for which priority is claimed, with such earliest filing date being commonly referred to as the priority date. In addition, U.S. patent applications filed before November 29, 2000 and certain U.S. patent applications filed after that date that will not be filed outside the United States remain confidential until patents issue. Therefore, patent applications covering our products and product candidates could have been filed by others without our knowledge. Additionally, pending patent applications that have been published can, subject to certain limitations, be later amended in a manner that could cover our current and future products and product candidates, or the use thereof, provided such pending patent applications result in issued patents. Our ability to develop and market our current and future products and product candidate can be adversely affected in jurisdictions where such patents are issued.
The scope of a patent claim is determined by an interpretation of the law, the written disclosure in a patent and the patent’s prosecution history. Our interpretation of the relevance or the scope of a patent or a pending application may be incorrect, which may negatively impact our ability to market our products or, if approved, product candidates. We may incorrectly determine that our products or product candidates are not covered by a third-party patent or may incorrectly predict whether a third-party’s pending application will issue with claims of relevant scope. Our determination of the expiration date of any patent in the United States or abroad that we consider relevant may be incorrect and we may incorrectly conclude that a third-party patent is invalid or unenforceable. Our failure to identify and correctly interpret relevant patents may negatively impact our ability to develop and market our current and future products and, if approved, product candidates.
If we fail to identify and correctly interpret relevant patents, we may be subject to infringement claims. We cannot guarantee that we will be able to successfully settle or otherwise resolve such infringement claims. If we fail in any such dispute, in addition to being forced to pay damages, we may be temporarily or permanently prohibited from commercializing any of our products or, if approved, product candidates, that are held to be infringing. We might, if possible, also be forced to redesign products or product candidates so that we no longer infringe the third-party intellectual property rights. Any of these events, even if we were ultimately to prevail, could require us to divert substantial financial and management resources that we would otherwise be able to devote to our business.
We may be involved in lawsuits to protect or enforce our patents, the patents of our licensors or our other intellectual property rights, which could be expensive, time consuming and unsuccessful.
Competitors may infringe, misappropriate or otherwise violate our patents, the patents of our licensors or our other intellectual property rights. To counter infringement or unauthorized use, we may be required to file
 
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and prosecute legal claims against one or more third parties, which can be expensive and time-consuming, even if ultimately successful. For example, in February 2022, Roivant’s subsidiary, Genevant Sciences, and Arbutus Biopharma Corporation filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware against Moderna, Inc. and an affiliate seeking damages for infringement of U.S. Patent Nos. 8,058,069, 8,492,359, 8,822,668, 9,364,435, 9,504,651, and 11,141,378 in the manufacture and sale of MRNA-1273, Moderna’s vaccine for
COVID-19
(the “Moderna Action”). In addition, in March 2022, Acuitas Therapeutics Inc. filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against Genevant Sciences and Arbutus Biopharma Corporation seeking a declaratory judgment that U.S. Patents 8,058,069, 8,492,359, 8,822,668, 9,006,417, 9,364,435, 9,404,127, 9,504,651, 9,518,272, and 11,141,378 are not infringed by the manufacture, use, offer for sale, sale or importation into the United States of COMIRNATY, Pfizer’s and BioNTech’s vaccine for
COVID-19
and are otherwise invalid (the “Acuitas Action”).
In an infringement proceeding, a court may decide that a patent of ours or our licensors is not valid or is unenforceable, or may refuse to stop the other party from using the technology at issue on the grounds that our patents do not cover the technology in question. The standards that courts use to interpret patents are not always applied predictably or uniformly and can change, particularly as new technologies develop. As a result, we cannot predict with certainty how much protection, if any, will be given to our patents if we attempt to enforce them and they are challenged in court and if any such suits, including the Moderna Action and the Acuitas Action, will ultimately be resolved successfully. Further, even if we prevail against an infringer in U.S. district court, there is always the risk that the infringer will file an appeal and the district court judgment will be overturned at the appeals court and/or that an adverse decision will be issued by the appeals court relating to the validity or enforceability of our patents. An adverse result in any litigation or defense proceedings could put one or more of our patents at risk of being invalidated or interpreted narrowly in a manner insufficient to achieve our business objectives, or could put our patent applications at risk of not issuing. The initiation of a claim against a third-party may also cause the third-party to bring counter claims against us such as claims asserting that our patents are invalid or unenforceable. In patent litigation in the United States, defendant counterclaims alleging invalidity or unenforceability are commonplace. Grounds for a validity challenge could be an alleged failure to meet any of several statutory requirements, including lack of novelty, obviousness,
non-enablement
or lack of written description or
non-statutory
subject matter. Grounds for an unenforceability assertion could be an allegation that someone connected with prosecution of the patent withheld relevant material information from the USPTO, or made a materially misleading statement, during prosecution. Third parties may also raise similar validity claims before the USPTO in post-grant proceedings such as ex parte reexaminations,
inter partes
review, or post-grant review, or oppositions or similar proceedings outside the United States, in parallel with litigation or even outside the context of litigation. The outcome following legal assertions of invalidity and unenforceability is unpredictable. We cannot be certain that there is no invalidating prior art, of which we and the patent examiner were unaware during prosecution. For the patents and patent applications that we have licensed, we may have limited or no right to participate in the defense of any licensed patents against challenge by a third-party. If a defendant were to prevail on a legal assertion of invalidity or unenforceability, we would lose at least part, and perhaps all, of any future patent protection on our current or future products or product candidates. Such a loss of patent protection could harm our business. Additionally, any adverse outcome could allow third parties to commercialize our products and compete directly with us, without payment to us, or result in our inability to manufacture or commercialize products without infringing third-party patent rights.
Even if we establish infringement, we may not seek, or the court may decide not to grant, an injunction against further infringing activity and instead award only monetary damages, which may or may not be an adequate remedy. We may not be able to detect or prevent, alone or with our licensors, misappropriation of our intellectual property rights, particularly in countries where the laws may not protect those rights as fully as in the United States. Any litigation or other proceedings to enforce our intellectual property rights may fail, and even if successful, may result in substantial costs and distract our management and other employees.
Furthermore, because of the substantial amount of discovery required in connection with intellectual property litigation, there is a risk that some of our confidential information could be compromised by disclosure
 
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during this type of litigation. There could also be public announcements of the results of hearings, motions or other interim proceedings or developments. If securities analysts or investors perceive these results to be negative, it could have an adverse effect on the price of our Common Shares.
We may not have sufficient financial or other resources to adequately conduct the Moderna Action, the Acuitas Action or any other such litigation or proceedings. Some of our competitors or other third parties may be able to sustain the costs of such litigation or proceedings more effectively than we can because of their greater financial resources. Because of the expense and uncertainty of litigation, we may conclude that even if a third-party is infringing our issued patent, any patents that may be issued as a result of our pending or future patent applications or other intellectual property rights, the risk-adjusted cost of bringing and enforcing such a claim or action may be too high or not in the best interest of our company or our shareholders. In such cases, we may decide that the more prudent course of action is to simply monitor the situation or initiate or seek some other
non-litigious
action or solution.
Because many of the patents we own or have licensed are owned or licensed by our subsidiaries, and in certain cases by subsidiaries that are not or will not be directly commercializing products, we may not be in a position to obtain a permanent injunction against a third-party that is found to infringe our patents.
Many patents that we own or have licensed are assigned to or licensed by our direct or indirect subsidiaries. For example, any patents that Immunovant has licensed are assigned to its wholly-owned subsidiary Immunovant Sciences GmbH and any patents that Dermavant owns or has licensed are assigned to its wholly-owned subsidiary Dermavant Sciences GmbH. If a third-party is found to be infringing such patents, we and our direct subsidiaries may not be able to permanently enjoin the third-party from making, using, offering for sale or selling the infringing product or activity for the remaining life of such patent in the United States or other jurisdictions when the patent is assigned to a subsidiary, which is not the entity that is or would be commercializing a potentially competitive product or service. In such a circumstance, such third-party may be able to compete with us or our subsidiaries, which could have a material adverse effect on our competitive position, business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
Changes in U.S. patent law or the patent law of other countries or jurisdictions could diminish the value of patents in general, thereby impairing our ability to protect our products and product candidates.
As is the case with other biopharmaceutical companies, our success is heavily dependent on intellectual property. Obtaining and enforcing patents in the biopharmaceutical industry involves both technological and legal complexity and is therefore costly, time consuming and inherently uncertain. Changes in either the patent laws or interpretation of the patent laws in the United States or USPTO rules and regulations could increase the uncertainties and costs.
The United States has recently enacted and implemented wide-ranging patent reform legislation. In addition, patent reform legislation may pass in the future that could lead to additional uncertainties and increased costs surrounding the prosecution, enforcement and defense of our patents and pending patent applications. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled on several patent cases in recent years, either narrowing the scope of patent protection available in certain circumstances or weakening the rights of patent owners in certain situations. In addition to increasing uncertainty with regard to our ability to obtain patents in the future, this combination of events has created uncertainty with respect to the value of patents, once obtained. For example, the Biden administration has indicated its support for a proposal at the World Trade Organization to waive patent rights with respect to
COVID-19
vaccines. Any waiver of our patent or other intellectual property protection by the U.S. and other foreign governments, including with respect to Genevant’s licensed lipid nanoparticle (“LNP”) delivery technology as used in connection with messenger RNA vaccine delivery, could have a material adverse effect on our competitive position, business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
Depending on actions by the U.S. Congress, the federal courts and the USPTO, the laws and regulations governing patents could change in unpredictable ways that would weaken our ability to obtain new patents or to
 
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enforce patents that we have licensed or that we might obtain in the future. Similarly, changes in patent law and regulations in other countries or jurisdictions or changes in the governmental bodies that enforce them or changes in how the relevant governmental authority enforces patent laws or regulations may weaken our ability to obtain new patents or to enforce patents that we have licensed or that we may obtain in the future. We cannot predict future changes in the interpretation of patent laws or changes to patent laws that might be enacted into law by United States and
non-U.S.
legislative bodies. Those changes may materially affect our patents or patent applications and our ability to obtain additional patent protection in the future.
In addition, the United States federal government retains certain rights in inventions produced with its financial assistance under the Bayh-Dole Act. The federal government retains a “nonexclusive, nontransferable, irrevocable,
paid-up
license” for its own benefit. The Bayh-Dole Act also provides federal agencies with
“march-in
rights.”
March-in
rights allow the government, in specified circumstances, to require the contractor or successors in title to the patent to grant a “nonexclusive, partially exclusive, or exclusive license” to a “responsible applicant or applicants.” For example, the research resulting in certain of our acquired or
in-licensed
patent rights and technology for certain products or product candidates was funded in part by the U.S. federal government. As a result, the federal government may have certain rights to such patent rights and technology, which include
march-in
rights. If the federal government decides to exercise these rights, it is not required to engage us as its contractor in connection with doing so. The federal government’s rights may also permit it to disclose our confidential information to third parties and to exercise
march-in
rights to use or allow third parties to use our licensed technology. The federal government can exercise its
march-in
rights if it determines that action is necessary because we fail to achieve practical application of the government-funded technology, or because action is necessary to alleviate health or safety needs, to meet requirements of federal regulations, or to give preference to U.S. industry. Further, the recipient of U.S. government funding is required to comply with certain other requirements, including timely disclosing the inventions claimed in such patent rights to the U.S. government and timely electing title to such inventions. The U.S. government has the right to take title to such intellectual property rights if we, or the applicable licensor, fail to disclose the invention to the government and fail to file an application to register the intellectual property within specified time limits. Intellectual property generated under a government funded program is also subject to certain reporting requirements, compliance with which may require us or the applicable licensor to expend substantial resources. In addition, our rights in such inventions may be subject to certain requirements to manufacture products or product candidates embodying such inventions in the United States. We cannot be certain that our current or future licensors will comply with the disclosure or reporting requirements of the Bayh-Dole Act at all times or be able to rectify any lapse in compliance with these requirements. Any exercise by the government of any of the foregoing rights or by any third-party of its reserved rights could have a material adverse effect on our competitive position, business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.
The validity, scope and enforceability of any patents listed in the Orange Book that cover our products or product candidates, or patents that cover our biologic product candidates, can be challenged by third parties.
If a third-party files an application under Section 505(b)(2) or an abbreviated new drug application (“ANDA”) under Section 505(j) with respect to any of our products or, if approved, product candidates, for a generic product containing any of our products or product candidates, including VTAMA (which, following the natural expiration of our method of use patent family, will be protected only by our formulation patent), and relies in whole or in part on studies conducted by or for us, the third-party will be required to certify to the FDA that either: (1) there is no patent information listed in the Orange Book with respect to our NDA for the applicable product or, if approved, product candidate; (2) the patents listed in the Orange Book have expired; (3) the listed patents have not expired, but will expire on a particular date and approval is sought after patent expiration; or (4) the listed patents are invalid or will not be infringed by the manufacture, use or sale of the third-party’s generic product. A certification under 21 CFR § 314.94(a)(12)(i)(A)(4) that the new product will not infringe the Orange Book-listed patents for the applicable product or, if approved, product candidate, or that such patents are invalid, is called a paragraph IV certification. If the third-party submits a paragraph IV certification to the FDA, a notice of the paragraph IV certification must also be sent to us once the third-party’s ANDA is
 
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accepted for filing by the FDA. We may then initiate a lawsuit to defend the patents identified in the notice. The filing of a patent infringement lawsuit within 45 days of receipt of the notice automatically prevents the FDA from approving the third-party’s ANDA until the earliest of 30 months or the date on which the patent expires, the lawsuit is settled, or the court reaches a decision in the infringement lawsuit in favor of the third-party. If we do not file a patent infringement lawsuit within the required
45-day
period, the third-party’s ANDA will not be subject to the
30-month
stay of FDA approval.
Moreover, a third-party may challenge the current patents, or patents that may issue in the future, within our portfolio, which could result in the invalidation of some or all of the patents that might otherwise be eligible for listing in the Orange Book for one of our products. If a third-party successfully challenges all of the patents that might otherwise be eligible for listing in the Orange Book for one of our products before an ANDA or 505(b)(2) NDA is filed we will be unable to obtain a
30-month
stay of FDA approval of a 505(b)(2) or ANDA.
For example, our three issued U.S. patents covering VTAMA may not provide adequate protection from competitive products developed by 505(b)(1) NDA, 505(b)(2) NDA or 505(j) ANDA applicants containing paragraph IV certifications if such applicants are able to design around the three patents. One or more competitors may circumvent these patents by filing a marketing application with the FDA under Sections 505(b)(2) or 505(j) of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act containing a paragraph IV certification for a competitive product containing the active moiety in VTAMA and successfully challenging the validity of the three patents or successfully designing around the three patents. Any successful challenge against the three patents and/or designing around one or more of the patents could result in a generic version of VTAMA being commercialized before the expiration of the three patents. If the three patents are successfully challenged or designed around, our business, results of operations, financial condition and prospects would be harmed.
For biologics, the BPCIA provides a mechanism for one or more third parties to seek FDA approval to manufacture or sell a biosimilar or interchangeable versions of brand name biological product candidates. Due to the large size and complexity of biological product candidates, as compared to small molecules, a biosimilar must be “highly similar” to the reference product with “no clinically meaningful differences between the two.” The BPCIA does not require reference product sponsors to list patents in the FDA’s Orange Book and does not include an automatic
30-month
stay of FDA approval upon the timely filing of a lawsuit. The BPCIA, however, does require a formal
pre-litigation
process which includes the exchange of information between a biosimilar applicant and a reference biologic sponsor that includes the identification of relevant patents and each parties’ basis for infringement and invalidity. After the exchange of this information, we may then initiate a lawsuit within 30 days to defend the patents identified in the exchange. If the biosimilar applicant successfully challenges the asserted patent claims, it could result in the invalidation of, or render unenforceable, some or all of the relevant patent claims or result in a finding of
non-infringement.