- AptameX™, Achiko's breakthrough DNA aptamer-based diagnostic test for Covid-19, received product and registration emergency use approval from the Ministry of Health in Indonesia, alongside its sister digital passporting service, Teman Sehat™ ("Health Buddy").
- PT Achiko Medika Indonesia, which is 50% owned by Achiko AG, and its manufacturing partner, PT Indofarma TBK, have signed an agreement for the production and registration of AptameX™.
- The approval, together with the partnership with PT Indofarma TBK, will enable access to low-cost and accurate Covid-19 testing for over 270 million Indonesians.
- Achiko closes funding with strategic investors for CHF 3.45 million. Proceeds will be used for working capital, business consolidation, and redemption of the Yorkville convertible note facility.
ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - EQS Newswire - 25 August 2021 - Ad hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 LR - Achiko AG (SWX: ACHI, ISIN CH0522213468) through PT Achiko Medika Indonesia ("Achiko", the "Company"), is pleased to announce that the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia has granted product and registration approval for its proprietary low-cost, rapid Covid-19 diagnostic test, AptameX™, alongside its sister digital passporting service, Teman Sehat™ ("Health Buddy"). Achiko's 50%-subsidiary, PT Achiko Medika Indonesia, and PT Indofarma TBK ("Indofarma) have entered into an agreement to manufacture AptameX™ and have received product registration approval in Indonesia.
The approval opens the door to the rapid scale-up of production and sale of Achiko's AptameX™ test kits in Indonesia. Available at an affordable price, AptameX™ provides millions of Indonesian residents with access to accurate diagnostic testing for Covid-19, enabling the country to more effectively control and contain the pandemic. Indonesia passed 50,000 daily Covid-19 cases in mid-July, amid the spread of the Delta variant in Southeast Asia.
"We are proud and excited to receive the official approval for our breakthrough test kit AptameX™. It is an immense achievement for us to be able to market it with Indofarma," said Steven Goh, CEO of Achiko. "At the projected vaccination rate, and considering likely mutations of the virus, the next few years may be very challenging not only for Indonesia, but also quite possibly for the entire world. The combination of AptameX™ and Teman Sehat™ provides communities and governments with an affordable, easy-to-use test and a digital passporting service, empowering them in their fight against Covid-19 and all its variants."
Covid-19 poses a challenge to traditional testing methods, as low viral loads evade most rapid tests, calling for a new paradigm. AptameX™ uses a proprietary, novel chemistry matching the speed of lateral flow rapid tests, while improving on sensitivity. At a significantly lower price point than other tests, it also offers a better user experience. Those that test positive are alerted promptly through the Teman Sehat™ digital passporting service and asked to follow local guidelines on isolation and quarantine. Its affordability, scalability and superior performance make it an ideal tool in Indonesia's fight against Covid-19.
Indofarma's President Director, Arief Pramuhanto, explains: "Testing regularly is crucial in containing the pandemic. AptameX™ is a Covid-19 diagnostic test produced domestically by and for the people of Indonesia that has been designed to be integrated into dental hygiene routines. Access to reliable and affordable testing will allow us to lead normal lives again and at the same time work to control the spread of Covid-19. Indofarma, in partnership with Achiko, aims to make this diagnostic readily available at an affordable price for everyone."
Dr Morris S. Berrie, President of Achiko, added: "Our team has been tireless in developing our technologies for rapid, affordable, diagnostic testing for Covid-19 and other forthcoming indications. AptameX™ is designed to be easy to use and affordable, and therefore accessible to anyone. We believe AptameX™ and our digital passporting service Teman Sehat™ will be vital diagnostic resources for many years to come."
In the cooperation between Achiko and Indofarma, a member of Indonesia's Holding BUMN Farmasi, which is partly owned by the Government of the Republic of Indonesia and listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX: INAF), Achiko will provide the technology and all materials for diagnostic kits while Indofarma will carry out the production and product registration processes.
Following the Ministry of Health's approval for AptameX™, Achiko is looking forward to securing a CE mark and introducing AptameX™ and Teman Sehat™ swiftly in further countries and regions. In parallel, Achiko is also investigating applications of AptameX™ to a range of other pathogenic diseases and therapeutic indications.
Achiko, on product approval, has raised a total amount of CHF 3.45 million through share placement at an average price of CHF 0.192 per share to a leading Swiss venture capital group, OCS International Commodities & Investments FZCO and other private investors. The funds are to be used as working capital and production funds as well as for the redemption of the Yorkville convertible note facility from 25 November 2020.
"We're grateful for the support of all our investors and shareholders," said Achiko CEO Goh. "These most recent investments provide a solid platform to consolidate our strategy as a global leading diagnostics company, connecting our capabilities in Europe and Asia in the fight against the challenge of Covid-19."
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