Pharma partnerships


Evotec is committed to delivering solutions for some of the largest and most pressing global medical needs. With EVT Innovate, the Company brings forward the most promising scientific ideas to make a difference in key medical areas. In its research initiatives, Evotec is progressing its pre-clinical assets to potential entry points for drug discovery alliances and partners those to pharmaceutical companies for upfront payments, on-going research fees and significant milestones and royalties. Through this strategy, Evotec is building a pipeline without bearing the extensive financial risk normally involved in such projects.


Almirall - Medical dermatology

In 2022, Evotec and Almirall announced a multi-target alliance in Medical Dermatology. The companies aim to discover and develop novel therapeutics for severe skin diseases, including immune-mediated inflammatory conditions such as atopic dermatitis and non-melanoma skin cancer such as basal cell carcinoma.

Under the agreement, Evotec receives an undisclosed upfront payment, research payments, as well as success-based milestones of potentially up to € 230 m per programme and royalties on net sales in the high single-digit percentage range.

Diabetes and diabetic complications

Lilly - Metabolic diseases

In January 2022, Evotec announced a drug discovery collaboration with Lilly in the field of metabolic diseases with a focus on kidney diseases and diabetes. The collaboration leverages Evotec’s unique and extensive kidney disease patient database, to identify and validate promising novel targets for therapeutic intervention. Evotec will be responsible for the discovery of potential drug candidates for the treatment of diabetes and chronic kidney diseases from targets identified by Lilly or by Evotec. Lilly reserves the right to select up to five programmes developed within this partnership and to continue with any subsequent development, clinical validation and commercialisation. 

In addition to an undisclosed upfront payment, Evotec will be eligible to receive success-based discovery development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments of up to US$ 180 m per programme, as well as tiered royalties on net sales of any products resulting from the collaboration, for a potential overall value up to US$ 1 bn. 

Chinook Therapeutics - Kidney disease

In March 2021, Evotec and Chinook Therapeutics announced a strategic collaboration focused on the discovery and development of novel precision medicine therapies for patients with chronic kidney diseases. Based on Evotec’s proprietary comprehensive molecular datasets from thousands of patients across chronic kidney diseases of multiple underlying etiologies, Chinook and Evotec will jointly identify, characterise and validate novel mechanisms and discover and develop precision medicines. 

Under the terms of the agreement, Chinook and Evotec will share drug discovery and pre-clinical development responsibilities. Chinook will be responsible for clinical development and commercialisation of product candidates developed under the collaboration. Evotec will receive an undisclosed upfront payment, research funding, and will be eligible to receive progress-dependent milestone payments and tiered royalties on net sales for targets identified through the collaboration.

Novo Nordisk - Kidney disease

In August 2020, Evotec and Novo Nordisk announced a strategic collaboration on the discovery and development of innovative therapeutics for patients with chronic kidney disease.

Evotec and Novo Nordisk will jointly identify and develop novel targets based on comprehensive medical and molecular data sets of thousands of chronic kidney disease patients. The collaboration intends to pursue the most relevant human disease biology in a therapeutic modality-agnostic approach to develop first-in-class therapeutics for patients suffering from CKD.

Under the terms of the agreement, Evotec and Novo Nordisk will share responsibilities during drug discovery and pre-clinical development. Novo Nordisk will be responsible for the clinical development and commercialisation of the products. Evotec will receive an undisclosed upfront payment, research funding and milestone potential of more than € 150 m per product as well as tiered royalties on net sales.

Bayer/ CureNephron

In September 2016, Evotec announced that Evotec and Bayer have entered into a five-year, multi-target research partnership. The goal is the development of multiple clinical candidates for the treatment of kidney diseases such as chronic kidney disease in diabetes patients. Both companies will contribute novel drug targets and a comprehensive set of high-quality technology platforms to jointly develop innovative treatment options for these severe conditions. The partners will share responsibilities during pre-clinical development of potential clinical candidates.

Under the terms of the agreement, Bayer received exclusive access to selected candidates as well as to Evotec’s CureNephron target pipeline. Bayer will be responsible for any subsequent clinical development and commercialisation. Evotec will receive a minimum of € 14 m over the contract period including research payments and an undisclosed licence fee. In addition, Evotec is eligible to receive pre-clinical, clinical and sales milestones of potentially over € 300 m as well as tiered royalties of up to low double-digit percentage of net sales. 

Inflammation and Immunology

Galapagos/ Fibrosis

In February 2019, Evotec and Galapagos announced a global collaboration focused on a novel target for fibrosis and other indications.

The collaboration concerns a small molecule programme, currently in pre-clinical development for the treatment of fibrotic diseases of the liver and other organs. The target has been identified and validated using Evotec’s proprietary platforms for fibrotic diseases and NASH. Evotec utilised its in-house assay development and drug screening capabilities to identify small molecule modulators against the target, which remains undisclosed.

In exchange for global commercialisation rights to Galapagos, Evotec receives an upfront payment and is eligible for potential milestone and royalty payments. Galapagos will be responsible for all further development of the programme. Furthermore, Galapagos will have access to specific screening formats at Evotec to support the final pre-clinical development.

Pfizer/ Fibrosis

In September 2015 Evotec announced that it has signed an agreement on a four-year research collaboration with Pfizer Inc. in the field of tissue fibrosis.

Under the terms of this licence and collaboration agreement, scientists at Evotec and Pfizer explore potential novel mechanisms as targeted anti-fibrotics in multi-organ fibrosis. Evotec contribute its drug discovery platform whereas Pfizer provide key technologies and industrial scope as well as pharmaceutical development and marketing expertise.

Financial terms of the collaboration include an upfront payment and potential milestone payments from Pfizer based on the achievement of specific development and sales milestones.

CONBA Pharmaceutical/ EVT401

In May 2012, Evotec and CONBA Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. announced the grant of a development and marketing licence on EVT401, a selective, small molecule P2X7 antagonist, for human indications with exception of ophthalmological, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (“COPD”) and endometriosis in China.

Evotec received a small upfront payment and is eligible for development and commercial milestone payments in excess of € 60 m and tiered double-digit royalties on net sales. The agreement grants CONBA exclusive rights to develop and commercialise the compound for the Chinese market. Evotec will have the right to reference clinical data produced by CONBA Pharmaceutical to support potential further development of EVT401 in other territories.

P2X7 receptor antagonism may provide a novel approach for the treatment of inflammatory conditions. Evotec has completed the first Phase I, single dose study of EVT 401 in 2010. CONBA will initiate further clinical trials with EVT401 in China in inflammatory diseases. In July 2013, CONBA received green light from the Chinese government to continue their studies on the EVT401 programme.


Bristol Myers Squibb/ neurodegenerative diseases

In December 2016, Evotec announced that Evotec and Celgene (now a Bristol Myers Squibb company) have entered into a strategic drug discovery and development collaboration to identify disease-modifying therapeutics for a broad range of neurodegenerative diseases. Initial disease areas of focus will include Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and multiple other neurodegenerative disorders.

Evotec has built an industrialised iPSC infrastructure that represents one of the largest and most sophisticated iPSC platforms in the industry. Evotec's iPSC platform has been developed over the last five years with the goal to industrialise iPSC-based drug screening in terms of throughput, reproducibility and robustness to reach the highest industrial standards. This effort was enabled by a research collaboration and licence agreement with Harvard University involving world-leading scientists at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute. In particular, a collaboration termed CureMotorNeuron that was initiated in 2013 with the laboratories of Professors Kevin Eggan, PhD, and Lee Rubin, PhD, resulted in significant contributions to the platform. Additional aspects of the platform were built up through Evotec's more than 10-year collaboration with the CHDI Foundation in the field of Huntington's disease.

Under the terms of the agreement, Evotec received an upfront payment of $ 45 m. Bristol Myers Squibb holds exclusive options to in-license worldwide rights to Evotec programmes developed from the company's compound library. Evotec may be eligible to receive up to $ 250 m in milestones as well as up to low double-digit royalties on in-licensed programmes. As part of the collaboration, Bristol Myers Squibb may also elect to screen compounds from its proprietary CELMoD(R) library using Evotec's iPSC platform to evaluate activity in models of neurodegenerative diseases. The initial term of the collaboration is five years.

In October 2017, Evotec announced that this strategic alliance has reached a first milestone triggering revenues of $ 5.0 m to Evotec. The milestone is due to the successful completion of a screening campaign using Evotec's induced pluripotent stem cell ("iPSC")-based screening platform.

In May and again in October 2018, Evotec announced that Bristol Myers Squibb decided to extend the collaboration to include additional cell lines, which each resulted in a $ 6 m payment to Evotec.

Following the advancement of a programme into the lead optimisation stage, Evotec announced in January 2019 that this scientific achievement had resulted in a payment of $ 14 m, which Evotec received before year-end 2018.

After receiving a $ 9 m payment for including further cell lines in June 2019, Evotec announced in January 2020 that the partnership had once again been expanded with additional cell lines against a $ 6 m payment from Bristol Myers Squibb.

In October 2020, Evotec announced that the Company had received a $ 6 m milestone payment from Bristol Myers Squibb, following the decision to expand the portfolio by another drug discovery project with direct relevance to Alzheimer's disease.

In September 2021, Evotec announced that Bristol Myers Squibb has exercised its option to enter into an exclusive global license for EVT8683, a small molecule targeting a key cellular stress response that holds great promise in various neurodegenerative indications. In Q4 2021, Bristol Myers Squibb initiated clinical Phase I trials for EVT8683.

In November 2021, Evotec announced that the Company reached additional programme designations within its neuroscience collaboration with Bristol Myers Squibb triggering payments of in total $ 40 m to Evotec.

In January 2022, Evotec announced another expansion of the collaboration. Bristol Myers Squibb and Evotec initiated discovery and development efforts regarding a new strategy to tackle neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s through a novel targeted protein degradation approach. Evotec received payments totalling $ 15 m from Bristol Myers Squibb.

JingXin/ EVT201

In October 2010, Evotec and Zhejiang JingXin Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd (“JingXin”) entered into a licence and collaboration agreement for EVT201 (a GABAA Receptor Partial Positive Allosteric Modulator), a novel potential treatment for insomnia. The agreement granted JingXin exclusive rights to develop and market the drug candidate in China. In return, Evotec received a small upfront payment, together with commercial milestones and significant royalties.
In April 2013, JingXin received approval from the Chinese Center of Drug Evaluation to commence clinical trials with EVT201 and is currently running Phase II clinical trials according to plan.
Evotec had previously concluded two Phase II studies, providing positive safety and efficacy results. All development costs are borne by JingXin and Evotec will have the right to reference clinical data produced by JingXin to support potential further development of EVT201 in other territories.

In Q2 2020, JingXin initiated Phase III clinical trials with EVT201 in China. In Q4 2021, JingXin reported positive results for EVT201 in insomnia. 
An expansion of the licensing agreement with JingXin for EVT201 and submission of regulatory approval in China through JingXin took place in Q2 2022. Regulatory approval for EVT201 in China is expected in 2023.     


Kazia Therapeutics/ EVT801

In April 2021, Evotec announced that the Company has entered into both a licensing and master service agreement with Kazia Therapeutics, an Australian oncology-focused biotechnology company. Under the contract, Evotec will grant Kazia an exclusive worldwide license for research, development and commercialisation of Evotec’s oncology project EVT801.

EVT801 is a pre-clinical-stage, orally available, small molecule inhibitor of the lymphatic growth factor receptor VEGFR3, originally developed within Evotec’s partnership with Sanofi. The high selectivity of EVT801 for VEGFR3 over other VEGF receptors differentiates the compound from other small-molecule multi-kinase inhibitors that target multiple VEGF receptors, which are associated with significant toxicity. EVT801 provides the potential to specifically antagonise VEGFR3 to combine high efficacy both against the primary tumour and lymphatic-borne metastases with a highly favourable toxicology profile. 

Evotec receives a small upfront payment as well as further payments for continued support progressing EVT801 into the clinic and beyond, e.g. for biomarker development and CMC. Additionally, Evotec is eligible to receive clinical and commercial milestones of more than € 300 m as well as tiered high single-digit royalties on the net sales of EVT801, which will be shared with Sanofi, Evotec’s partner for the discovery and early development of EVT801.

In Q4 2021, Kazia has commenced enrolment to a Phase I clinical of EVT801.

Apeiron-Sanofi/ TargetImmuniT

In January 2013, Evotec and Apeiron Biologics entered into a research collaboration with the objective of developing immunomodulatory lead compounds for the treatment of cancer. Apeiron Biologics contributed in vitro and in vivo pharmacology expertise to this collaboration while Evotec was responsible for medicinal chemistry as well as chemical proteomics. The collaboration was based on the successful outcome of a phenotypic high-throughput screen previously commissioned by Apeiron Biologics to Evotec.
In August 2015, Evotec and Apeiron announced a strategic collaboration with Sanofi to develop novel small molecule-based cancer immunotherapies. This collaboration includes major research and development efforts to advance a first-in-class small molecule approach to treat solid and haematopoietic cancers by enhancing the anti-tumour activity of human lymphocytes. Based on Evotec's technological expertise and Apeiron Biologics' immunological know-how, the collaboration also focuses on the identification of novel small molecule hits and their targets for next-generation therapies in immuno-oncology which are expected to complement the current offerings of checkpoint inhibitors.
The agreement triggered two years of substantial research payments for Evotec and Apeiron Biologics with the opportunity to receive pre-clinical, clinical, regulatory and commercial milestones which could total over EUR 200 m as well as royalties upon commercialisation.

In Janury 2018, Evotec and Apeiron announced that the companies received the first milestone payment from Sanofi. The milestone payment of € 3 m was split equally between the two biotech companies.


In January 2022, Evotec announced that the Company has entered a target and drug discovery partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim, focusing on induced pluripotent stem cell (“iPSC”)-based disease modelling for ophthalmologic disorders. 

Through phenotypic screening of human iPSC-derived cells, supported by Evotec’s PanOmics platform, Evotec will identify small molecules able to modulate disease phenotypes, and then validate the underlying promising targets for potential therapeutic interventions. Boehringer Ingelheim will then continue with the discovery and development of potential therapeutic candidates. Besides an undisclosed upfront and FTE-based research payment, Evotec will continue to benefit from the successful further development of the candidates in the form of milestones and layered royalties.

Women`s health

Bayer - Endometriosis and chronic cough

In October 2012, Evotec and Bayer Pharma AG entered into a five-year, multi-target collaboration with the goal of developing three clinical candidates for the treatment of endometriosis. Both parties contribute innovative drug targets and high-quality technology infrastructures and share the responsibility for early research and pre-clinical characterisation of potential clinical candidates in the disease area of endometriosis.

Bayer will be responsible for any subsequent clinical development and commercialisation. Evotec will receive € 12 m as an upfront payment. In total Evotec may receive pre-clinical, clinical and sales milestones of potentially up to approximately € 580 m plus potential royalties of up to low double-digit percent of net sales.

The alliance has already generated multiple pre-clinical development candidates and the first programme progressed into Phase I clinical trials in August 2016. Three more Phase I studies were started in July 2017, in April 2018, and in January 2020.

Eliapixant (BAY1817080) - Phase II development

In July 2018, Evotec announced that Eliapixant was advanced into Phase II testing for treatment of chronic cough. In July 2019, positive Phase II POC results were published for Eliapixant. 

In 2020/21, Bayer initiated four Phase 2 trials with Eliapixant in refractory chronic cough, endometriosis, overactive bladder and neuropathic pain. 

In August 2021, positive Phase IIb data were published for Eliapixant in patients with refractory chronic cough.

In February 2022, the Company has been informed by Bayer about a decision to discontinue the development of eliapixant.
As a consequence of Bayer’s decision, Evotec regains the rights to all P2X3 assets. The Company will evaluate the underlying data as soon as they are made available and will evaluate all options.

White Paper

To promote complementary inter-company cooperation for future research collaborations, Evotec and Bayer have published a white paper on their successful alliance.

About Endometriosis

Endometriosis affects an estimated 176 million women worldwide or 10% of women of reproductive age. It is caused by the abnormal growth of tissue similar to that which lines the uterus (endometrial tissue) in locations outside of the uterine cavity, where it causes ectopic lesion growth and debilitating pain. Endometrial growth is commonly found on the ovaries and pelvic peritoneum, potentially involving other organs of the pelvic cavity as e.g. bladder, bowel, and the rectovaginal space. There is no known cure for endometriosis and most available drug treatments have certain limitations. Endometriosis is a highly complex and heterogeneous disease and there is still a high unmet medical need for innovative therapies which address the individual needs of affected women. The disease can greatly impact a woman‘s social, professional and personal life, and women with endometriosis often experience a higher incidence of depression and emotional distress due to the uncertainty of diagnosis, unpredictability of symptoms and living a normal life.

Bayer - Celmatix/ polycystic ovary syndrome

In January 2020, Evotec and Bayer announced the expansion of their partnership in women’s health indications with a new five-year, multi-target collaboration to develop multiple clinical candidates for the treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome (“PCOS”).

Under the terms of the agreement, both companies will contribute drug targets and a comprehensive set of high-quality technology platforms to jointly develop innovative treatment options. The strategic alliance will also have access to targets from the recently formed partnership between Celmatix and Evotec. Celmatix is the world leader in big data-driven target discovery focused on fertility and women’s health.

Bayer and Evotec will share responsibilities during the pre-clinical development of potential clinical candidates. Bayer will be responsible for any subsequent clinical development and commercialisation. Evotec will receive € 6.5 m upfront payment and € 10 m research payments over five years. In addition, Evotec might be eligible to receive pre-clinical, clinical and sales milestones of potentially over € 330 m as well as royalties up to low double-digit percentages of net sales.

RNA platform


In March 2021, Evotec announced that the Company has entered into a multi-RNA target alliance with Takeda with the goal to discover and develop RNA targeting small molecule therapeutics for highly attractive targets that are difficult to address via more conventional approaches.

Evotec and Takeda will jointly identify and develop small molecules targeting a range of RNA targets aligned with Takeda’s research and development areas. The collaboration will leverage Evotec’s extensive RNA targeting platform to optimally identify promising RNA sequences to target with small molecule ligands that can be developed into potentially first-in-class therapeutics.

Under the terms of the agreement, Evotec will receive significant research funding and will be eligible to receive discovery, pre-clinical, clinical, commercial and sales milestone payments of up to $ 160 m per programme. Additionally, Evotec is entitled to tiered royalties on net sales of any products resulting from the collaboration.

About Evotec’s RNA platform

The structure-based recognition of RNA tertiary structures by RNA-targeted small molecules (“rSM”) provides an alternative to sequence-based approaches, such as antisense oligonucleotides (“ASOs”). rSM approaches enable novel therapeutic potential by allowing to target highly conserved parts of RNA, creating pathways in cases where the encoded protein cannot be targeted conventionally, and unlocking the largely unexplored field of non-coding RNAs, which can also be disease drivers. 

Evotec’s proprietary RNA targeting platform is specifically designed to

  1. identify RNA tertiary structural elements where rSM are able to bind with sufficient selectivity and affinity,
  2. discover and develop suitable rSM binders that potentially deliver orally available drugs, and
  3. identify and deliver proof-of-target engagement for disease-relevant RNA structures, allowing biologically active rSM binders. 

Evotec’s cutting-edge RNA small molecule platform builds on the well-established drug discovery routes within Evotec and combines them with novel, highly innovative technologies such as third generation sequencing, sequencing-based structure elucidation of RNA molecules, which constitute a first-class expertise in this area.

Targeted Protein Degradation Platform

Janssen - Receptor Shedding

In June 2022, Evotec announced that the Company has entered a drug discovery collaboration with Janssen Pharmaceutica NV. Evotec’s innovative TargetAlloMod platforms will be evaluated to discover first-in-class novel mode of action therapeutic candidates. The agreement was facilitated by Johnson & Johnson Innovation.

Besides research funding, Evotec is entitled to success-based research and commercial milestones up to approximately € 210 m per project as well as tiered royalties on products resulting from this collaboration.

Bristol Myers Squibb - Molecular Glue Degraders

In 2018, Evotec entered into a long-term strategic drug discovery and development partnership in the field of targeted protein degradation with Celgene, now Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS). The aim of this strategic alliance is to leverage Evotec’s EVOpanOmics platform in order to identify drug targets which are traditionally difficult to track. EVOpanOmics applies in particular high-end proteomics and transcriptomics at industrial scale to profile and select promising drug candidates on the basis of comprehensive cell biological profiles. EVOpanOmics also includes an integrated data analytics platform, EVOpanHunter, which facilitates the analysis and interpretation of large ‘omics’ data sets. 

After having extended the alliance in 2021, Evotec announced in 2022 that it has further extended and expanded its partnership with BMS for another 8 years as the initial collaboration proved to be highly productive in generating a promising pipeline of molecular glue degraders. 

Over the course of the collaboration, Evotec received more than $ 265 m upfront payments. Overall there is a deal potential of $ 5 bn for Evotec with additional tiered royalties on product sales. 

You can find more information about this transformational alliance in the download below.