BioNTech SE will be acquiring British artificial intelligence (AI) startup called InstaDeep for about 562 million pounds (i.e. $682 million) to upscale its biotech research and manufacturing.
BioNTech will pay 362 million pounds upfront, in an unspecified number of BioNTech shares and a mix of cash, and up to 200 million pounds contingent on InstaDeep’s future performance.
BioNTech Chief Executive and co-founder Ugur Sahin said, “Our aim with the acquisition is to integrate artificial intelligence in all aspects of our work seamlessly, from target discovery, lead discovery, manufacturing to delivery of our products.”
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With an estimated COVID-19 vaccine revenue of up to $18.2 billion in 2022, BioNTech is seen as well-funded to advance its research on new cancer immunotherapies and other vaccines.
BioNTech said it is already involved in dozens of joint projects with InstaDeep, including efforts to quickly determine whether a new COVID variant is a cause for concern.