Kane Biotech Patents Paying Off
May 27, 2017 – Winnipeg Free Press, by Martin Cash
With a new exclusive distribution agreement in the bag and its best quarter in almost 15 years as a publicly listed company, Kane Biotech Inc. may be starting to realize its potential.
The Winnipeg company has amassed a portfolio of about 70 patents — it may be the leading biofilm company in the world — but is just now getting the hang of the commercialization process.
Mark Ahrens-Townsend made it clear when he took over as CEO two years ago the company’s priority would be to pursue efforts to commercialize its biofilm dispersing technology in the dog and cat oral care market.
StrixNB, its veterinary specialist product, has been on the market for four years and sales are finally picking up. For the quarter — and along with another version of the product sold over-the-counter in specialty pet stores under the brand Bluestem — they totalled $114,175, up from $37,017 a year ago.
But the main bump in the quarter came from the first of four $500,000 milestone payments from its 10-year exclusive licensing deal it signed earlier this year with the U.K. veterinary pharmaceutical company Dechra Pharmaceuticals plc.
That put its first quarter revenue up to $784,900, 925 per cent better than the first quarter of 2016.
“We are starting to see some traction,” Ahrens-Townsend said.
“The deal with Dechra is starting to show that people value the technology we have.”
Dechra’s deal allows it to make and distribute oral health products using Kane’s patented biofilm technology — designed to fight plaque and tartar — and sell them exclusively to veterinary offices across North America.
Over the last two years, Kane has increased its staff from about six to 16 people and has succeeded in selling its products in more than 1,000 stores and vet clinics, mostly in Canada.
But Dechra has the clout of an international specialist in the veterinary pharmaceuticals products business.
There are about 26,000 veterinary clinics in the U.S. and the company likely has some connection to most of them.
Officials from the U.K. company — whose sales were about $304 million for the six months ended Dec. 31, 2016 — were unavailable to comment, but Ahrens-Townsend believes Dechra will have the re-branded product on the market by early in the third quarter of this year.
“Dechra is aggressive, they are on the ball, very focused on the vet market and they chose to work with us,” Ahrens-Townsend said.
“We think it validates that our technology works and that we have the capability to execute agreements with someone like that.”
It also gives the company some confidence as it pursues partnership agreements with some of its other technologies, which have human skin care and wound treatment applications.
“We plan to move and take advantage of all these other applications in human health,” he said.