Freshfields Advised to Novartis Facilitates Transfer of Life Science Park Rhine Valley to Getec
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, a global law firm, advised Novartis on the transfer of the Life Science Park Rhine Valley in Stein, Switzerland to industrial park operator Getec. Novartis had originally developed the life science park, and Getec will now take over management and further development. The transfer is expected to be completed by the end of 2023, and 25 employees will move from Novartis to Getec.
In a bid to attract a wider array of life science enterprises, Novartis introduced the Life Science Park 2021. Presently, the Life Science Park Rhine Valley accommodates nearly 2,000 professionals employed within pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms. Noteworthy entities such as Lonza and Celonic, in addition to Novartis, are part of this dynamic ecosystem.
Novartis will continue to occupy a central role as the primary occupant of the premises, while the ongoing development of the life science park is to be steered by Getec. This strategic direction will enable Novartis to streamline its focus on its core operational activities.
Freshfields regularly advises Novartis on major transactions. For example, the firm advised Novartis on the sale of its vaccine manufacturing plant in Marburg, Germany to BioNTech in 2021. Freshfields also advised Novartis on the carve-out of its generic drug manufacturing division, Sandoz, in 2022.
The Novartis representation was overseen by the Freshfields team, with leadership provided by Partner Barbara Keil based in Munich and Principal Associate Jacob Fontaine from Hamburg, both specializing in Corporate/M&A. The team consisted of:
Corporate/M&A: Principal Associate Elisabeth Wulf (London), Associate Maria Tumpel (Vienna), Associate Jan Postweiler (Munich), Senior Transaction Lawyers Sebastian Fistric (Frankfurt), Edwige Nathan (Berlin), Lawyer Romaric Cecillon (Frankfurt), Transaction Lawyer Francesca von Canstein (Munich).
Regulatory matters were handled by Partner Michael Ramb (Düsseldorf), Counsel Sascha Arnold (Hamburg), and Principal Associate Nicolas Sölter (Hamburg).
Homburger, with a team led by Daniel Häusermann, addressed the Swiss law aspects of the transaction.
Within Novartis, the transaction was managed internally by Sonya Rogerson, who serves as the Head of Transformation for Transactions and Real Estate & Facility Services (REFS).