It was good news for Chippenham-based respiratory firm Vectura yesterday; the company received a sizable milestone payment from Germany’s Boehringer Ingelheim and unveiled a strong set of interim results.

The group has received a 10 million-euro milestone payment from the German drugmaker, under their pact signed last year to develop a multi-dose, dry powder inhaler for delivering respiratory drugs for asthma and COPD.

As per the terms of the agreement, BI will also invest 5 million euros in Vectura through the purchase of 3.6 million new ordinary shares at a price of £0.96 each, bringing its total holding to 8.5 million shares or 2.7% of the issued capital.

Commenting on the deal, Chris Blackwell, Chief Executive of the UK group said: “This is a significant achievement for Vectura, which further endorses our strength in respiratory product development…The non-exclusive nature of this agreement provides us with an excellent opportunity to deliver further value from our inhaled therapy technologies.”

Financials looking strong
Meanwhile, Vectura unveiled a strong set of interim results for the six-month period ending September 30, 2007, with revenues rocketing 102% to £12.3 million, and gross profit leaping 116% to £9.8 million, in line with analyst expectations.

Furthermore, the group racked up a number of successes on the development side during the period, including: the initiation of three Phase II clinical studies NVA237 and QVA149 for COPD (in partnership with Novartis); successful completion of second Phase II study of VR040 for Parkinson’s disease; and starting a Phase I trial VR147 for migraine.

“We have made significant advances across our product portfolio and…believe Vectura will play a key role in the rapidly growing respiratory market,” Blackwell concluded.