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2 July, 2018 - 11:09 By Tony Quested

Acacia show of strength with $30m Hercules facility

Cambridge-based Acacia Pharma can now flex its muscle in the US thanks to a $30 million credit facility from Wall Street-quoted Hercules Technology Growth Capital.

The facility from the California venture lender will support Acacia’s intended commercialisation of its treatment for Post-operative Nausea & Vomiting (PONV) in surgical and cancer patients the US.

The technology is expected to be launched under the trade name BARHEMSYS™ following the conditional approval by the US Food & Drug Administration, with October 5 slated as a start date.

The first tranche of $10m was drawn at the closing of the new credit facility. An existing credit facility with Silicon Valley Bank of £3.75m was repaid in full prior to closing, accelerating payments that would otherwise have been due over the next 12 months. 

The second tranche of $10 million can be drawn at Acacia Pharma’s option and subject to FDA approval of BARHEMSYS for the management of PONV.

Christine Soden, chief financial officer of Acacia Pharma, said: "The proceeds from this credit facility provide Acacia Pharma with additional funding to support our commercialisation activities in the US as we continue to prepare for the launch, if approved, of BARHEMSYS. 

“This is in line with our financing strategy set out during our recent global offering. We appreciate the support of Hercules and its confidence in BARHEMSYS and our management team and look forward to a long and productive working relationship.”

The third tranche of $5m can be drawn at any time within 21 months of closing and is conditional on Acacia securing additional finance from the issue of equity or subordinated debt. A fourth tranche of $5m may be made available at Hercules’ option at any time prior to March 31. 

Hercules is the leading and largest specialty finance company focused on providing senior secured venture growth loans to high-growth, innovative venture capital-backed companies in a broad variety of technology, life sciences and sustainable and renewable technology industries. 

Since inception in December 2003, Hercules has committed more than $7.6 billion to over 420 companies and is the lender of choice for entrepreneurs and venture capital firms seeking growth capital financing.

Growing fast under the guidance of CEO Julian Gilbert, Acacia Pharma is a hospital pharmaceutical company that has identified important and commercially attractive unmet needs in nausea & vomiting and has discovered two product candidates based on the same active ingredient, amisulpride, to meet those needs.

The Group's lead project, BARHEMSYS has generated positive results in Phase 3 clinical studies and an NDA has been accepted for filing by the US FDA for marketing approval. 

Its sister project, APD403 for chemotherapy-induced nausea & vomiting (CINV) has successfully completed one proof-of-concept and one Phase 2 dose-ranging study in patients receiving highly emetogenic chemotherapy.
Anchored in Cambridge UK, Acacia has US operations centred in Indianapolis. The company is listed on the Euronext Brussels exchange.

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Acacia Pharma CEO, Julian Gilbert

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