LEIDEN, NETHERLANDS, Jul 15, 2008 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX) -- Leiden, The Netherlands, July 15, 2008. Biotech company Pharming Group NV ("Pharming" or "the Company") (NYSE Euronext: PHARM) announced today that it has signed a commercialization and supply agreement with Aslan Group A.S. in Turkey ("Aslan") for the marketing and distribution of food or food supplements containing Pharming's human lactoferrin product (hLF).
Under the agreement, Pharming will supply to Aslan milk powder containing specified amounts of hLF. Aslan will be responsible for the production and the design of the finished products. The final products will be used as food or as a food supplement targeted at people who will benefit from the use of hLF. Aslan acquired the exclusive distribution rights for Turkey, Middle East, Ukraine and Russia. Under the terms of the agreement Aslan will pay a transfer price for the bulk product which is dependent on the specified concentration of hLF. Further financial details were not disclosed. The agreement has a lifetime of five years with an option to further extension. During the initial period of the agreement Pharming's production capacity will be increased to be able to satisfy the growing market's demand.
Lactoferrin is a protein naturally present in different mammalian secretions especially in human breast milk, saliva and tears. The protein has several properties related to the human immune system, including anti-infective and anti-inflammatory protection. Several scientific studies have shown that the product is safe. Pharming is producing hLF in milk of transgenic cattle in its facilities in Wisconsin (USA) for use as an ingredient in advanced nutritional products.
Dr. Bruno Giannetti, Chief Operations Officer at Pharming, commented: "The agreement with Aslan on recombinant human lactoferrin is a hallmark for Pharming's transgenic technology platform. It is our first product to become available on the market and it is the first human product from this technology in advanced food products. People are more and more focussing on health and healthy food and markets for nutritional applications are only growing."
Aslan Group is one of the leading family owned companies in Turkey, with a successful track record in several business areas, which has been established in 1978. Nutrition is the newest focus of the Aslan Group in the fast growing market of Turkey. Ibrahim Aslan, owner and Chairman of the Aslan Group commented: "The agreement with Pharming can be considered for the Aslan Group as a first step in the important high-tech nutritional market."
About Pharming Group NV
Pharming Group NV is developing innovative products for the treatment of genetic disorders, ageing diseases, specialty products for surgical indications, intermediates for various applications and nutritional products. Pharming has two products in late stage development - Rhucin(R) for Hereditary Angioedema and human lactoferrin for use in food products. The advanced technologies of the Company include innovative platforms for the production of protein therapeutics, technology and processes for the purification and formulation of these products, as well as technology in the field of DNA repair (via DNage). Additional information is available on the Pharming website, http://www.pharming.com and on http://www.dnage.nl.
This press release contains forward looking statements that involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from the results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by these forward looking statements. The press release also appears in Dutch. In the event of any inconsistency, the English version will prevail over the Dutch version.