Delivra Corp. (the “Company” or “Delivra”) is a developer of transdermal technologies for the delivery of pharmaceutical and natural molecules, through the skin, rather than via pills. Delivra manufactures and sells a growing line of natural topical creams under the LivRelief™ brand, for conditions such as joint and muscle pain, nerve pain, circulation, wound healing, and under the LivRelief™ brand for sports performance. LivRelief™ products are available in pharmacies, grocery chains, and independent health food stores across Canada, and on-line at www.livrelief.com, with plans for a robust US market entry in 2016. In parallel with its consumer products business, Delivra also has a mandate to license its patentpending delivery platform to pharmaceutical companies globally for the transdermal delivery of third party active ingredients to treat a broad range of conditions. The Company believes that the combination of a growing consumer health products business, together with the potential upside of the technology licensing business, creates a compelling and unique business model and value proposition.
Company History and Business Overview
Incorporated in 2007, Delivra’s initial mandate was research into and development of its transdermal (meaning, “through the skin”) delivery platform. Based on those development activities, in 2011, Delivra commercialized its own Pain Relief Cream and made it available for sale in selected natural health stores and independent pharmacies in Canada. From 2012 to the present, Delivra continued to improve its product formulations, engaged in expanded marketing efforts, and successfully achieved distribution with major pharmacy and grocery chains across Canada, creating a strong and growing brand. During these years, Delivra also continued and increased its Research and Development (“R&D”) efforts relating to its transdermal delivery system, enhancing and validating its capabilities across a range of natural and pharmaceutical molecules.
Today, the Company’s business is divided into two main areas of focus, namely OTC Retail and Technology Licensing:
Consumer Healthcare – Over the Counter (“OTC”) Retail products
A line of natural topical cream products, sold at retail locations across Canada, under the LivRelief™ brand, including:
- LivRelief™ Pain Relief Cream – used to treat joint pain due to inflammation;
- LivRelief™ Nerve Pain Relief Cream – used to treat cutaneous nerve pain associated with conditions such as diabetic neuropathy, sciatica, and shingles;
- LivRelief™ Varicose Vein Cream – used to enhance circulation and to treat and reduce the appearance of varicose veins; and
- LivRelief™ Healing Cream – used to heal cuts, burns, and sores and help relieve skin inflammations and irritations.
Locations where the LivRelief™ products can be found include Shoppers Drug Mart, Walmart, Rexall, London Drugs, Pharmasave, Guardian IDA, Jean Coutu, Brunet, Familiprix, Lawtons, Metro, and Sobeys – and other fine independent pharmacies and retailers.
The Company has also developed a line of unique natural topical cream products under the LivSportTM brand including:
- LivSport™ Pre-Workout Cream – developed to enhance endurance and performance for professional and amateur athletes; and
- LivSport™ Post-Workout Cream – developed to improve recovery of muscles after workout for professional and amateur athletes.
Distribution channel plans for the LivSport™ products will be finalized in Q2 2016.
Platform Technology Licensing
The foundation of each of Delivra’s branded products is its patent-pending DelivraTM transdermal delivery system, a platform which enables through-the-skin penetration and delivery of a range of active ingredients intended to treat a variety of symptoms and conditions.
Delivra believes there is an opportunity to license its delivery system to third parties, such as pharmaceutical companies, for transdermal delivery of a range of molecules, as an alternative to oral medication (pills). Delivra has therefore devoted significant research and development to testing and broadening the capabilities of its delivery system for this business purpose.
Some of the key features of the Delivra platform include:
- Very strong dermal absorption and deep penetration
- Delivery through a gentle and non-invasive emollient base
- Polypharmacy and multi-drug formulations (base can hold up to 25% active molecules)
- Local or systemic (into the bloodstream) delivery
- Controlled (“slow”) release of actives
- Mitigation of “depot effect” with lipophilic molecules
- Delivery of larger molecules (~1400 Da), water-soluble molecules, peptides, etc.
Notably, traditional transdermal systems have generally been limited to much smaller molecules (300-500 Da) and have struggled with the delivery of water soluble and low bioavailability molecules – two of Delivra’s key strengths. The continued and significant move within drug development towards peptides and biologics, which are not generally amenable to oral administration (pills), also plays directly to Delivra’s strengths.
Delivra currently has 13 employees, with 6 of those being primarily focused on the commercial activities of LivCorp Inc., and 7 being primarily focused on the R&D and product development activities of Delivra.
Delivra™ has 21 Natural Health Product (NHP) registrations with Health Canada, and 11 National Drug Code (NDC) registrations with US FDA. The Company also has a growing intellectual property portfolio, with 8 patents-pending, on its delivery system and specific applications of its delivery system.
Market and Industry Overview
The market for transdermal drug delivery has been growing at a robust pace in recent years, and is expected to reach approximately USD $40 billion annually by 2018 (source: Kelly Scientific).
The growth in transdermal delivery is driven by a number of factors, including:
- oral medications are largely broken down in passage through the gastrointestinal tract, leaving less of the active ingredient available for systemic delivery to address the intended issue;
- common and reputed side effects of oral medications, including stomach upset, liver and kidney problems, hypertension, etc.;
- greater safety and efficacy of topicals versus orals;
- targeted delivery of active ingredients which is possible with topical but not with oral medications;
- new technologies that can deliver a broader range of molecules transdermally; and
- as the patents for popular drugs expire, branded manufacturers are looking for ways to reposition and re-energize growth due to competition from generic manufacturers.
Markets for prescription-based delivery of pharmaceutical ingredients remain driven by efficacy, science, and clinical results. A proven and demonstrable ability to deliver molecules of interest remains the primary driver of adoption. Delivra does not intend to undertake the regulatory approval process associated with the transdermal delivery of pharmaceutical ingredients (drugs), but rather to license its platform technology to pharmaceutical companies, who will then be responsible for regulatory approvals, given their experience, expertise, infrastructure, and available resources.
Geographically, Delivra’s OTC products have been historically focused on the Canadian market. Delivra launched an on-line store for sales to the US market in its fourth fiscal quarter of 2015. Depending on a number of factors, including capital availability, the success of the on-line program, and interest from major US retailers, Delivra intends to make its products available through US retail channels (eg. pharmacies, large format retailers, grocery chains) in 2016. In the longer term, further international growth into selected markets in Europe and Asia may also be pursued. In terms of the licensing of Company’s delivery platform to pharmaceutical companies, it will generally be at the discretion of the licensee which markets they wish to pursue, although the global mandate of most such companies would imply a broad geographical reach in distribution.
Recent years have seen an increasing move by traditional pharmaceutical companies into OTC consumer healthcare markets, expanding their scope beyond drugs and prescriptions and into consumer packaged goods markets. Delivra believes this industry dynamic, in the context of its present positioning within pharmaceutical delivery markets as well as OTC markets, is an important source of long-term value for shareholders.
The Company has a strong balance sheet, with September 30, 2015 reported working capital of approximately $2.3 million, and having since added approximately $2.5 million in cash through a private placement and the closing of it Qualifying Transaction in December 2015.
ABOUT DELIVRA CORP.
Delivra Corp. is a developer of transdermal technologies for the delivery of pharmaceutical and natural molecules, through the skin, rather than via pills. Delivra manufactures and sells a growing line of natural topical creams under the LivRelief™ brand, for conditions such as joint and muscle pain, nerve pain, varicose veins, wound healing, and sports performance. LivRelief™ products are available in pharmacies, grocery chains, and independent health food stores across Canada, and on-line at www.livrelief.com. In parallel with its consumer products business, Delivra also has a mandate to license its unique, proven, and patent-pending delivery platform to global pharmaceutical companies for the transdermal delivery of third party active ingredients to treat a broad range of conditions. With a global transdermal drug delivery market forecast to grow to USD $40 billion by 2018 (Source: Kelly Scientific), Delivra believes the licensing opportunity is robust. Delivra is headquartered in Burlington, Ontario and has a research and development laboratory in Charlottetown, PEI.
The TSX Venture Exchange has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release.
Neither the Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. Certain information in this press release may constitute forward-looking information. This information is based on current expectations that are subject to significant risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. Actual results might differ materially from results suggested in any forward-looking statements. The Corporation assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those reflected in the forward looking-statements unless and until required by securities laws applicable to the Corporation. Additional information identifying risks and uncertainties is contained in the Corporation’s filings with the Canadian securities regulators, which filings are available at www.sedar.com.
For more information, please contact:
Chris Schnarr, President and CFO