Bird & Bird advises Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd. on the acquisition of the majority share in Vakzine Projekt Management GmbH

By Beate Westlake


International law firm Bird & Bird advises Indian vaccine manufacturer Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd. on the acquisition of the majority share in German project management service provider Vakzine Projekt Management GmbH through its wholly owned subsidiary Serum International B.V., Netherlands. The shares in Vakzine Projekt Management were sold and transferred by Ascenion GmbH, Förderverein des HZI e.V. and former management. Förderverein des HZI e.V. remains a minority shareholder in order to retain its strategic partnership with Serum Institute of India, particularly in the field of vaccine development and marketing.

Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd. is the world's largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally (more than 1.3 billion doses) which includes Polio vaccine as well as Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hib, BCG, r-Hepatitis B, Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccines. It is estimated that about 65% of the children in the world receive at least one vaccine manufactured by Serum Institute.

The transaction was led by Bird & Bird’s Düsseldorf Corporate M&A team comprising of Counsel Stefanie Orttmann and Partner Alfred Herda who were assisted by Associates Christoph Meves, Jan Medele and Jennifer Neff (all part of the Corporate M&A team, Düsseldorf). During the due diligence process and further instruction in connection with the legal environment of a German entity and Vakzine Projekt Management GmbH in particular, a broader cross-office and cross-border team supported the core Bird & Bird team throughout the entire transaction process which comprised Anna Wolters (IP Partner, Hamburg), Daniela Kinkeldey (Patent Partner, Munich), Matthias Lang (Regulatory Partner, Düsseldorf), Alexander Csaki (Public Procurement Partner, Munich), René Rieter (Corporate Partner and Notary, The Hague), Catharina Klumpp (Employment Counsel, Düsseldorf), Stephan Waldheim (Competition Counsel, Düsseldorf), Elie Kaufman (Real Estate Counsel, Frankfurt), Sebastian Hoepfner (Patent Counsel, Munich), Nick Pearson (IP Counsel, Düsseldorf), Natallia Karniyevich (Commercial Associate, Düsseldorf), Alexandra Bednarek (Regulatory Associate, Düsseldorf), Lucas Brons (IP Associate, Hamburg), Janina Heidemann (Public Procurement Associate, Munich) and Marcio Da Silva Lima (Competition Associate, Düsseldorf).

The Bird & Bird team acted in close cooperation with Serum’s inhouse legal team based in Pune, India, in particular general counsel Makarand Karkare and Tushar Modak.

Background: Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd. was already represented by a cross-border Bird & Bird team in the acquisition of Dutch vaccine manufacturer Bilthoven Biologicals from the government in the Netherlands in 2012.