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Biopure Case Notes

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Biopure Corporation:

Carl Rausch – president and CEO of Biopure

Oxyglobin (First of two new blood substitutes , US gov’t approved it) – this was for the vet market

Hemopure – for the human market was still 2 years away from the final government approval

Ted Jacobs (VP for Human Clinical Trails) – thought that release of oxyglobin should be delayed until after Hemopure was approved and had established itself in the marketplace. If Oxyglobin were released first, there was the chance that it would create an unrealistic price expectation for Hemopure

The vet market was much smaller and price sensitive, because of this it could sell for a lot less than the potential of Hemopure (which could potentially be sold for $600-$800 per unit).

  • It would be impossible to price Hemopure at $800 (500% increase from that of oxyglobin) when they are essentially the same product.

Andy Write (VP of Veternary products) thought that the release of Oxyglobin outweighed the costs – by releasing it, they could potentially generate enough revenues to launch Hemopure.

Overview of Biopure:

  • Biopharmaceutical firm specializing in the ultrapurification of proteins for human and veterinary use
  • Major contender of blood substitutes- replicating the oxygen-carrying function of actual blood, eliminating the shortcomings associated with transfusion of donated blood
  • Oxyglobin and Hemopure were both bovine-sourced as opposed to human-sourced which made them different from other “hemoglobin-based” blood substitutes
  • Spent about $200 million in the development of both
  • Oxyglobin received FDA approval and Hemopure would soon enter Phase 3 clinical trials
  • Ted Jacobs and others questioning whether the immediate release of oxyglobin might not impinge on Biopure’s ability to optimally price Hemopure.

The Human Blood Market –

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