Saturday, May 27, 2023

West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) Partners with EMTECH SOLUTIONS INC to Modernize Fintech Regulatory Frameworks Across the West African Monetary Zone


(BUSINESS WIRE) -- The West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) and EMTECH SOLUTIONS Inc. today announced a strategic partnership to modernize country-level and regional regulatory sandboxes, enabling the harmonization of heterogeneous Fintech regulatory policies and frameworks across the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ). The collaboration aims at strengthening financial integration across the WAMZ member states.

WAMI and EMTECH will establish a knowledge and collaboration program called WAMZ RegEX, which focuses on showcasing regulatory innovation, sharing insights from global and regional regulatory sandbox benchmarking, onboarding a cohort of WAMZ regulatory sandboxes to conduct rapid pilots, and promoting value. Additionally, the partnership will involve publishing research and case studies, as well as capacity-building programs and thought-leadership workshops.

Olorunsola E. Olowofeso, Director General of the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI), emphasized the importance of the partnership saying, "Our collaboration with EMTECH marks a new chapter in our commitment to creating a unified financial landscape in the WAMZ and signifies a critical step towards achieving a more integrated and technologically advanced financial ecosystem in West Africa. We look forward to the positive impact this partnership will have on our member states and the broader West African region."

Souleymane Tall, Director of Financial Integration at WAMI, highlighted the strategic value of this collaboration and stated that the partnership with EMTECH would align with our core mission to promote financial integration and regional economic development. By working together, we could unlock new opportunities, improve access to financial services, and contribute to the overall growth and stability of the West African Monetary Zone.

Tunji Odumuboni, Executive Director, Africa at EMTECH, remarked, "We are excited and honored to collaborate with WAMI to drive financial integration and economic development within the WAMZ." EMTECH’s expertise in Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) and Digital Regulatory Sandbox technology will support WAMI and WAMZ member states in fostering an environment conducive to financial innovation.

Carmelle Cadet, Founder and CEO of EMTECH added, "The collaboration between EMTECH and WAMI aligns with our mission of making financial markets inclusive and resilient for everyone, by modernizing central banking infrastructure."

“We are eager to work with WAMI to deploy solutions addressing local and regional fintech innovation and regulatory frameworks in the West African Monetary Zone." Cadet continued, “As many countries are developing fintech regulatory frameworks, a regulatory sandbox is a powerful tool to support safe innovations and capitalize on investment opportunities and economic growth. From the U.S. to Europe, regulators need novel new tools. By joining efforts with WAMI, we are committed to working closely with all 6 member states and support them along this new journey of modern central banking in Africa. In EMTECH, they have a real partner for the long haul.”

For more information about the partnership between WAMI and EMTECH, please contact WAMI Press Contact at +233 (0)302 743801 or and EMTECH Press Contact at +1 415 889-7444 or

About the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI)

The West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) is an organization established to undertake technical preparations for the establishment of a West African central bank and launching of a single currency for the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ). The Institute's overarching mission is to conduct preparatory activities for the launch of a monetary union, including research and publication, data collection and sharing, and the dissemination of information to facilitate trade integration, financial sector integration, payments system development, and statistical harmonization.


EMTECH is a modern central bank technology and services company offering an integrated SaaS platform with products such as the Digital Regulatory Sandbox and Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC). EMTECH's innovative solutions empower central banks, financial institutions, and regulators to navigate the rapidly evolving landscape of financial services innovation and regulation. EMTECH enables its partners to address local and regional challenges, foster financial inclusion, and drive sustainable economic growth by providing cutting-edge technology solutions and services.


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West African Monetary Institute (WAMI)


+233 (0)302 743801


Jessica Rees


+1 415 889-7444

Friday, May 26, 2023

Skyflow Radically Simplifies Data Residency

PALO ALTO, Calif. - Friday, 26. May 2023

Leading SaaS and B2C companies launch in new regions in weeks, not years.

(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today Skyflow, the data privacy vault company, announced new data residency capabilities including Asia-Pacific instances in Japan, Indonesia, India, and Bahrain, and an expansion of its footprint in EMEA and North America.

With Skyflow, companies that store sensitive customer data can meet regulatory requirements for localized storage, provable and auditable data protection, and governance – simply by leveraging Skyflow’s global vault infrastructure. This enables global expansion to reach new customers in new markets, while minimizing complexity and cost. For example, SaaS ISVs can scale and sell their product in both EMEA and APAC without adding instances.

Replicating Instances is Expensive and Slow

Today, companies that want to expand internationally face a technically complex and expensive proposition: replicate all of your cloud infrastructure, databases, and data warehouses by adding instances in each region before onboarding new customers in that region.

As more countries implement data protection laws, some businesses that were previously compliant now face the need to re-architect their customer data platform (CDP) and cloud infrastructure.

With Skyflow, companies have a better option: add a data privacy vault in each region with data localization requirements, and store sensitive customer data in that local vault. Skyflow’s unique polymorphic encryption and tokenization capabilities let you do this without losing the ability to run workflows, analytics, or even machine learning while maintaining compliance.

Launch in New Regions in Weeks

One Skyflow customer, a Fortune 500 computer hardware company, was able to launch a new product in 30 countries across six regions in just three weeks without replicating their CDP or cloud infrastructure. They provisioned Skyflow vaults in each region, and stored their customer PII locally, all using Skyflow’s simple, yet powerful API.

“Our customers love that they can run their businesses globally without worrying about expensive replication and duplication. By isolating the PII and storing it locally, they meet localization requirements and also enhance security and governance controls,” said Anshu Sharma, co-founder and CEO of Skyflow. “We run a global network of cloud infrastructure so you don’t have to.”

“Skyflow enabled us to set up vaults in different regions quickly – such as Bahrain and the UAE – without having to spend money and resources replicating our infrastructure. Implementation was easy, so we were able to quickly start supporting customers across EMEA while ensuring privacy and compliance," said Michael Tomlins, co-founder and CEO of Apaya.

Read about Skyflow’s data residency solution here.

About Skyflow

Skyflow is a data privacy vault company built to radically simplify how companies isolate, protect and govern their customers’ most sensitive data. With its global network of data privacy vaults, Skyflow helps companies meet complex data localization requirements. Skyflow customers span verticals like fintech, retail, travel, and healthcare. Skyflow is headquartered in Palo Alto, California and was founded in 2019. For more information, visit or follow on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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Ali Rae Hunt

Takeda and HUTCHMED Announce New Drug Application (NDA) for Fruquintinib for Treatment of Previously Treated Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Granted Priority Review

 OSAKA, Japan & CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & HONG KONG & SHANGHAI & FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Friday, 26. May 2023 AETOSWire Print 

− Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) Target Action Date Set for November 30, 2023

− NDA Includes Results From the Phase 3 FRESCO-2 and FRESCO Clinical Trials

(BUSINESS WIRE) -- Takeda (TSE:4502/NYSE:TAK) and HUTCHMED (China) Limited (Nasdaq/AIM:HCM, HKEX:13) (HUTCHMED) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted priority review of the New Drug Application (NDA) for fruquintinib, a highly selective and potent inhibitor of vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFR) -1, -2 and -3 for the treatment of adult patients with previously treated metastatic colorectal cancer (CRC). If approved, fruquintinib will be the first and only highly selective inhibitor of all three VEGF receptors approved in the U.S. for previously treated metastatic CRC.1,2 The Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) goal date assigned by the FDA for this NDA is November 30, 2023.

“We are confident that fruquintinib has the potential to transform the treatment landscape for those living with previously treated metastatic colorectal cancer, as demonstrated by its strong clinical profile,” said Awny Farajallah, M.D., head of Global Medical Affairs Oncology at Takeda. “There are significant needs for patients with this disease in the U.S., and we believe fruquintinib has the potential to address these needs regardless of patients’ biomarker status. We look forward to continuing conversations with the FDA with the goal to make this therapy available to patients as soon as possible.”

The NDA for fruquintinib includes results from the Phase 3 FRESCO-2 trial along with data from the Phase 3 FRESCO trial conducted in China. FRESCO-2 is a global Phase 3 multi-regional clinical trial (MRCT) conducted in the U.S., Europe, Japan and Australia investigating fruquintinib plus best supportive care (BSC) vs placebo plus BSC in patients with previously treated metastatic CRC. The FRESCO-2 trial met its primary and key secondary endpoints, showing a significant and clinically meaningful improvement in overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS), respectively. Fruquintinib has been generally well tolerated in patients to date.

“The clinical benefit of fruquintinib has been confirmed in multiple ways, from global clinical studies to commercialization in China. We are pleased to have Takeda as our partner furthering development and commercialization of fruquintinib outside of China,” said Dr. Michael Shi, Head of R&D and Chief Medical Officer, HUTCHMED. “Today’s acceptance marks a significant advancement towards the goal of providing patients with previously treated metastatic colorectal cancer a much-needed therapeutic option, given the limited treatment options currently available to patients. This also supports our ongoing vision to design and develop differentiated molecules that help patients with high unmet needs globally.”

Fruquintinib is currently approved in China under the brand name ELUNATE®. Approval in China was based on the results of the FRESCO study, a Phase 3 pivotal registration trial of fruquintinib in 416 patients with metastatic CRC in China, published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, JAMA, in June 2018 (NCT02314819).3 In March 2023, HUTCHMED and Takeda closed an exclusive licensing agreement to further the global development, commercialization and manufacture of fruquintinib outside of China.

About Fruquintinib

Fruquintinib is a highly selective and potent oral inhibitor of VEGFR -1, -2 and -3. VEGFR inhibitors play a pivotal role in blocking tumor angiogenesis. Fruquintinib was designed to improve kinase selectivity with the intention of minimizing off-target toxicities, improving tolerability and providing more consistent target coverage. Fruquintinib has been generally well tolerated in patients to date and is being investigated in combinations with other anti-cancer therapies.

About FRESCO-2

The FRESCO-2 study is a multi-regional clinical trial conducted in the U.S., Europe, Japan and Australia investigating fruquintinib plus BSC vs placebo plus BSC in patients with previously treated metastatic CRC. As previously disclosed, the 691-patient study met its primary endpoint of OS in patients with metastatic CRC who had progressed on standard chemotherapy and relevant biologic agents and who had progressed on, or were intolerant to, TAS-102 and/or regorafenib. In addition to OS, a statistically significant improvement in PFS, a key secondary endpoint, was observed. Fruquintinib has been generally well tolerated in patients to date. Summary results were initially presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress in September 2022.4 Additional details of the study may be found at, using identifier NCT04322539.

About CRC

CRC is a cancer that starts in either the colon or rectum. According to the International Agency for Research on Cancer, CRC is the third most prevalent cancer worldwide, associated with 935,000 deaths in 2020.5 In the U.S., it is estimated that 153,000 patients will be diagnosed with CRC and 53,000 deaths from the disease will occur in 2023.6 In Europe, CRC was the second most common cancer in 2020 with approximately 520,000 new cases and 245,000 deaths. In Japan, CRC was the most common cancer with an estimated 148,000 new cases and 60,000 deaths in 2020.5 Although early-stage CRC can be surgically resected, metastatic CRC remains an area of high unmet need with poor outcomes and limited treatment options. Some patients with metastatic CRC may benefit from personalized therapeutic strategies based on molecular characteristics; however, most patients have tumors that do not harbor actionable mutations.7,8,9,10,11

About Takeda

Takeda is focused on creating better health for people and a brighter future for the world. We aim to discover and deliver life-transforming treatments in our core therapeutic and business areas, including gastrointestinal and inflammation, rare disease, plasma-derived therapies, neuroscience, oncology and vaccines. Together with our partners, we aim to improve the patient experience and advance a new frontier of treatment options through our dynamic and diverse pipeline. As a leading values-based, R&D-driven biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Japan, we are guided by our commitment to patients, our people and the planet. Our employees in approximately 80 countries and regions are driven by our purpose and are grounded in the values that have defined us for more than two centuries. For more information, visit


HUTCHMED (Nasdaq/AIM:HCM; HKEX:13) is an innovative, commercial-stage, biopharmaceutical company. It is committed to the discovery and global development and commercialization of targeted therapies and immunotherapies for the treatment of cancer and immunological diseases. It has approximately 5,000 personnel across all its companies, at the center of which is a team of about 1,800 in oncology/immunology. Since inception it has focused on bringing cancer drug candidates from in-house discovery to patients around the world, with its first three oncology drugs now approved and marketed in China. For more information, please visit: or follow us on LinkedIn.

Takeda Important Notice

For the purposes of this notice, “press release” means this document, any oral presentation, any question and answer session and any written or oral material discussed or distributed by Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (“Takeda”) regarding this release. This press release (including any oral briefing and any question-and-answer in connection with it) is not intended to, and does not constitute, represent or form part of any offer, invitation or solicitation of any offer to purchase, otherwise acquire, subscribe for, exchange, sell or otherwise dispose of, any securities or the solicitation of any vote or approval in any jurisdiction. No shares or other securities are being offered to the public by means of this press release. No offering of securities shall be made in the United States except pursuant to registration under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or an exemption therefrom. This press release is being given (together with any further information which may be provided to the recipient) on the condition that it is for use by the recipient for information purposes only (and not for the evaluation of any investment, acquisition, disposal or any other transaction). Any failure to comply with these restrictions may constitute a violation of applicable securities laws. The companies in which Takeda directly and indirectly owns investments are separate entities. In this press release, “Takeda” is sometimes used for convenience where references are made to Takeda and its subsidiaries in general. Likewise, the words “we”, “us” and “our” are also used to refer to subsidiaries in general or to those who work for them. These expressions are also used where no useful purpose is served by identifying the particular company or companies.

Takeda Forward-Looking Statements

This press release and any materials distributed in connection with this press release may contain forward-looking statements, beliefs or opinions regarding Takeda’s future business, future position and results of operations, including estimates, forecasts, targets and plans for Takeda. Without limitation, forward-looking statements often include words such as “targets”, “plans”, “believes”, “hopes”, “continues”, “expects”, “aims”, “intends”, “ensures”, “will”, “may”, “should”, “would”, “could” “anticipates”, “estimates”, “projects” or similar expressions or the negative thereof. These forward-looking statements are based on assumptions about many important factors, including the following, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements: the economic circumstances surrounding Takeda’s global business, including general economic conditions in Japan and the United States; competitive pressures and developments; changes to applicable laws and regulations, including global health care reforms; challenges inherent in new product development, including uncertainty of clinical success and decisions of regulatory authorities and the timing thereof; uncertainty of commercial success for new and existing products; manufacturing difficulties or delays; fluctuations in interest and currency exchange rates; claims or concerns regarding the safety or efficacy of marketed products or product candidates; the impact of health crises, like the novel coronavirus pandemic, on Takeda and its customers and suppliers, including foreign governments in countries in which Takeda operates, or on other facets of its business; the timing and impact of post-merger integration efforts with acquired companies; the ability to divest assets that are not core to Takeda’s operations and the timing of any such divestment(s); and other factors identified in Takeda’s most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F and Takeda’s other reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, available on Takeda’s website at: or at Takeda does not undertake to update any of the forward-looking statements contained in this press release or any other forward-looking statements it may make, except as required by law or stock exchange rule. Past performance is not an indicator of future results and the results or statements of Takeda in this press release may not be indicative of, and are not an estimate, forecast, guarantee or projection of Takeda’s future results.

HUTCHMED Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the “safe harbor” provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements reflect HUTCHMED’s current expectations regarding future events, including its expectations regarding the submission of a NDA for fruquintinib for the treatment of CRC with the FDA and the timing of such submission, the therapeutic potential of fruquintinib for the treatment of patients with CRC and the further clinical development of fruquintinib in this and other indications. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties. Such risks and uncertainties include, among other things, assumptions regarding the timing and outcome of clinical studies and the sufficiency of clinical data to support NDA approval of fruquintinib for the treatment of patients with CRC or other indications in the U.S. or other jurisdictions such as Europe or Japan, its potential to gain approvals from regulatory authorities on an expedited basis or at all; the efficacy and safety profile of fruquintinib; HUTCHMED’s ability to fund, implement and complete its further clinical development and commercialization plans for fruquintinib; the timing of these events; each party’s ability to satisfy the terms and conditions under the license agreement; actions of regulatory agencies, which may affect the initiation, timing and progress of clinical trials or the regulatory pathway for fruquintinib; Takeda’s ability to successfully develop and commercialize fruquintinib; and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on general economic, regulatory and political conditions. In addition, as certain studies rely on the use of other drug products such as paclitaxel as combination therapeutics with fruquintinib, such risks and uncertainties include assumptions regarding the safety, efficacy, supply and continued regulatory approval of these therapeutics. Such forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements regarding the plan to develop and commercialize fruquintinib under the license agreement; potential payments under the license agreement, including the upfront payment and any milestone or royalty payments; potential benefits of the license agreement; and HUTCHMED’s strategy, goals and anticipated milestones, business plans and focus. Existing and prospective investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. For further discussion of these and other risks, see HUTCHMED’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, on AIM and on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited. HUTCHMED undertakes no obligation to update or revise the information contained in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or circumstances or otherwise.

Takeda Medical Information

This press release contains information about products that may not be available in all countries, or may be available under different trademarks, for different indications, in different dosages, or in different strengths. Nothing contained herein should be considered a solicitation, promotion or advertisement for any prescription drugs including the ones under development.


1 Xu X, et al. Efficacy and safety of regorafenib and fruquintinib as third-line treatment for colorectal cancer: a narrative review. Transl Cancer Res 2022;11(1):276-287. doi: 10.21037/tcr-20-3539

2 Sun Q, et al. (2014) Discovery of fruquintinib, a potent and highly selective small molecule inhibitor of VEGFR 1, 2, 3 tyrosine kinases for cancer therapy, Cancer Biol Ther. 2014 15:12, 1635-1645. Doi: 10.4161/15384047.2014.964087

3 Li J, Qin S, Xu RH, et al. Effect of Fruquintinib vs Placebo on Overall Survival in Patients With Previously Treated Metastatic Colorectal Cancer: The FRESCO Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA. 2018;319(24):2486-2496. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.7855.

4 Dasari NA, et al. LBA25 – FRESCO-2: A global phase 3 multiregional clinical trial (MRCT) evaluating the efficacy and safety of fruquintinib in patients with refractory metastatic colorectal cancer. Ann Oncol. 2022 Sep;33(suppl_7): S808-S869. 10.1016/annonc/annonc1089.

5 Sung H, et al. Global Cancer Statistics 2020: GLOBOCAN Estimates of Incidence and Mortality Worldwide for 36 Cancers in 185 Countries. CA Cancer J Clin. 2021;71(3):209-249. doi:10.3322/caac.21660

6 Siegel RL, al. Colorectal cancer statistics, 2023 [published online ahead of print, 2023 Mar 1]. CA Cancer J Clin. 2023;10.3322/caac.21772. doi:10.3322/caac.21772

7 Bando H, et al. Therapeutic landscape and future direction of metastatic colorectal cancer. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol (2023). Doi:10.1038/s41575-022-00736-1

8 D'Haene N, et al. Clinical application of targeted next-generation sequencing for colorectal cancer patients: a multicentric Belgian experience. Oncotarget. 2018;9(29):20761-20768. Published 2018 Apr 17. doi:10.18632/oncotarget.25099

9 Venderbosch, et al. (2014). Mismatch repair status and braf mutation status in metastatic colorectal cancer patients: A pooled analysis of the Cairo, Cairo2, coin, and Focus Studies. Clinical Cancer Research, 20(20), 5322–5330.

10 Koopman, M., et al. (2009). Deficient mismatch repair system in patients with sporadic advanced colorectal cancer. British Journal of Cancer, 100(2), 266–273.

11 Ahcene Djaballah S, et al. HER2 in Colorectal Cancer: The Long and Winding Road From Negative Predictive Factor to Positive Actionable Target. Am Soc Clin Oncol Educ Book. 2022;42:1-14. doi:10.1200/EDBK_351354


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Takeda Media Contacts:

Japanese Media

Jun Saito

U.S. and International Media

Sara Noonan

+1 (508) 566-2408

Emma Nash

+1 (404) 927-9113

HUTCHMED Contacts:

Investor Enquiries

Mark Lee, Senior Vice President +852 2121 8200

Annie Cheng, Vice President +1 (973) 306-4490

Media Enquiries

Americas – Brad Miles, Solebury Strategic Communications +1 (917) 570 7340 (Mobile) /

Europe – Ben Atwell / Alex Shaw, FTI Consulting +44 20 3727 1030 / +44 7771 913 902 (Mobile) / +44 7779 545 055 (Mobile) /

Asia – Zhou Yi, Brunswick +852 9783 6894 (Mobile) /

Nominated Advisor

Atholl Tweedie / Freddy Crossley / Daphne Zhang

Panmure Gordon +44 (20) 7886 2500

Global Talent Shines at II Moscow Interior and Design Week

 Moscow, Russia - Friday, 26. May 2023 AETOSWire  


The Russian capital has just finished hosting the II Moscow Interior and Design Week, which combined several major activities for industry: expo and marketplace, open discussions, lectures and workshops.


For several days, exhibition pavilions in Moscow were transformed into venues where companies and creators from all over the world showcased their creative furniture and interior design solutions, along with modern installations, while the attendees had an opportunity to buy the latest industry novelties at a discount.


This year's event brought together more than 650 Russian and international brands: leaders and trend-setters in the industry. The exhibition program saw contributions from foreign companies representing India, Peru, Turkey, Iran, Vietnam, and other countries. Flagship brands, up-and-coming businesses, and authentic local companies presented their products to global interior design enthusiasts and a wide audience of potential buyers all in one place.


The II Moscow Interior and Design Week also provided a platform for establishing and strengthening international partnerships in the industry. This was demonstrated following a cooperation agreement signed with PMVSN LLC from the United Arab Emirates. In addition, several international cooperation agreements were signed with companies from China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Armenia. Delegations from Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Peru, Algeria, Uzbekistan, Oman, Japan, and Yemen also attended the event.


Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin notes that «More than 650 companies from Russia and friendly countries offered their solutions. We saw 46% more brands and 20% more visitors at this year’s event compared to the inaugural event in Moscow in November 2022. Additionally, experts that joined the business program talked about the current state and prospects of the industry in Russia and in the world, modern approaches to designing residential and commercial spaces, and other important issues».


Over and above its importance, the exhibition was crucial in bringing together industry players, value-adding education programs, and renowned speakers from all over the world. Among them, were the famous Brazilian designer and Casa Vogue Design Award finalist Juliana Lima Vasconcellos, and GQ Designer of the Year Tristan du Plessis from South Africa. Over 152 presentations were made by speakers from Russian and 11 international speakers from eight countries including Thailand, Peru, Mexico, India, and others. Over a hundred thematic sessions were also showcased to a large general and specialized audience.



Melwyn Abraham

Merck Highlights Commitment to Improving Cancer Outcomes at ASCO 2023

Not intended for UK-, US- or Canada-based media

(BUSINESS WIRE) -- Merck, a leading science and technology company, today announced that 43 abstracts covering several modalities and mechanisms will be presented at the 2023 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, June 2-6, Chicago, Ill., US. New data for the medicines BAVENCIO® (avelumab), ERBITUX® (cetuximab), and TEPMETKO® (tepotinib) and pipeline assets including the first-in-class investigational IAP (inhibitor of apoptosis protein) inhibitor xevinapant demonstrate the Company’s efforts to pioneer novel medicines intended to improve the lives of people living with cancer.

“The research we will present at ASCO 2023 demonstrates that we are not only maximizing the impact of our standard-of-care treatments but also advancing development programs focused on synergistic approaches targeting key cancer pathways and mechanisms,” said Victoria Zazulina, M.D., Head of Development Unit, Oncology, for the Healthcare business of Merck.

Key presentations include:

BAVENCIO (Abstracts: 4515, 4516) clinical data reinforce its role as a standard of care in first-line maintenance for advanced urothelial carcinoma (UC): Poster discussions, including long-term safety analyses and an analysis of quality-adjusted survival from the Phase III JAVELIN Bladder 100 study, confirm the acceptable long-term benefit-risk profile as well as the net benefit estimate of BAVENCIO first-line (1L) maintenance and further support its use as a standard of care for advanced UC. As part of the JAVELIN Bladder regimen, BAVENCIO first-line maintenance has demonstrated the longest survival benefit seen to date in a global, randomized Phase III trial in advanced UC.

Xevinapant (Abstracts: TPS6101, 6027) preclinical data supporting dosing rationale for this investigational IAP inhibitor as well as a trial-in-progress poster outlining design of the recently initiated Phase III XRay Vision® study in locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (LA SCCHN): Preclinical data demonstrate the benefit of extended xevinapant treatment beyond the completion of xevinapant plus radiotherapy (RT) and support the rationale for administration of six cycles of xevinapant in the ongoing Phase III studies, while also indicating that restoring sensitivity to apoptosis may address some unmet treatment needs in LA SCCHN. The trial design of the ongoing randomized Phase III XRay Vision study also will be featured. This study is assessing xevinapant plus RT in patients with resected, high-risk LA SCCHN who are not eligible for cisplatin.

TEPMETKO (Abstracts: 9021, 9060, 9070, 9074) data continue to demonstrate durable efficacy for first-line treatment of METex14 advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC): Long-term outcomes from the VISION study, the largest study of a MET inhibitor in patients with METex14-skipping advanced NSCLC (N=313), demonstrate the robust and durable clinical activity of TEPMETKO, particularly in the first-line setting, detected by liquid and/or tissue biopsy: with median follow-up of 32.6 months, in 164 first-line patients, overall response rate was 57.3% (95% CI: 49.4, 65.0) and median duration of response was 46.4 months (13.8, not estimable). A manageable safety profile further supports its use in clinical practice. Additional presentations for TEPMETKO include analyses from the INSIGHT 2 study in EGFRm METamp NSCLC for patients treated with TEPMETKO plus osimertinib.

ERBITUX (Abstracts: 3507, 3544, 3603) data to be presented at the congress add to the growing body of evidence supporting the role of cetuximab-based therapies across the continuum of care in the treatment of RAS wild-type metastatic colorectal cancer and as a backbone of treatment in SCCHN.

Additional company-sponsored activity at ASCO:

CME Live Symposium & Webcast, “After More Than a Decade: Can We Now Enhance Treatment of Patients With LA SCCHN?” with course director Kevin Harrington, PhD, FRCR, FRCP, The Institute of Cancer Research, The Royal Marsden Hospital, London, UK, on June 3, 7:00-8:00 PM CDT, Hilton Chicago (720 South Michigan Ave.), room Continental A.

A UC Biosphere™ Connect event, “First-Line Maintenance Therapy: Supporting Patient Care in aUC” on June 4, 6:30-8:00 PM CDT, Marriott Marquis Chicago (connected to McCormick Place, 2121 S. Prairie Ave.), Great Lakes Ballroom C, Level 2)

In addition to the data being presented at ASCO 2023, Merck will launch a new educational initiative for oncology professionals on the unmet medical need in LA SCCHN, cancer’s resistance to apoptosis, and the role of apoptosis proteins. More information on the initiative can be found at

Select Merck-related abstracts accepted for presentation at ASCO 2023 include (all times in CDT):


Lead Author


Session Information

BAVENCIO (avelumab)

Advanced Urothelial Carcinoma

Long-term safety of avelumab first-line (1L) maintenance for advanced urothelial carcinoma (aUC) in the JAVELIN Bladder 100 trial

Bellmunt J


Genitourinary Cancer: Kidney and Bladder

Saturday, June 3, 2023


Poster Discussion Time:



Estimated net benefit of avelumab (AVE) + best supportive care (BSC) vs BSC alone for patients (pts) with advanced urothelial carcinoma (aUC) using a quality-adjusted time without cancer symptoms or toxicity (Q-TWiST) analysis


Powles T


Genitourinary Cancer: Kidney and Bladder

Saturday, June 3, 2023



Poster Discussion Time:


Real-world response (rwR) rates and clinical outcomes of patients treated with first-line (1L) platinum-based chemotherapy (PBC) for advanced urothelial cancer (aUC)


Moon HH


Genitourinary Cancer: Kidney and Bladder

Saturday, June 3, 2023

8:00 AM-11:00 AM

Metastatic Merkel Cell Carcinoma

Avelumab as second-line or later (2L+) treatment in patients (pts) with metastatic Merkel cell carcinoma (mMCC): analysis of real-world outcomes in France using the CARADERM registry and the French national healthcare database


Blom A


Melanoma/Skin Cancers

Saturday, June 3, 2023


Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

Modified FOLFOXIRI plus cetuximab and avelumab as initial therapy in RAS wild-type unresectable metastatic colorectal cancer: results of the phase II AVETRIC trial by GONO


Conca V


Gastrointestinal Cancer: Colorectal and Anal

Monday, June 5, 2023






Phase 3 study of xevinapant plus radiotherapy (RT) for high-risk, cisplatin-ineligible patients with resected, locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (LA SCCHN)


Ferris RL


Head and Neck Cancer

Monday, June 5, 2023


Effect of extended treatment with IAP inhibitor xevinapant post radiotherapy (RT) on efficacy and the tumor microenvironment (TME) in preclinical models


Yeung TL


Head and Neck Cancer

Monday, June 5, 2023


TEPMETKO (tepotinib)




Long-term outcomes of tepotinib in patients with MET exon 14 skipping NSCLC from the VISION study


Paik P


Lung Cancer: Non-Small Cell Metastatic

Sunday, June 4, 2023



Tepotinib + osimertinib for EGFR mutant (EGFRm) NSCLC with MET amplification (METamp) after first-line (1L) osimertinib


Tan D


Lung Cancer: Non-Small Cell Metastatic

Sunday, June 4, 2023


Poster Discussion Time:



Detection of MET amplification (METamp) in patients with EGFR mutant (m) NSCLC after first-line (1L) osimertinib


Yu H


Lung Cancer: Non-Small Cell Metastatic

Sunday, June 4, 2023


Patients with EGFR-mutant (m) MET-altered NSCLC receiving tepotinib with an EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI): a case series

Le X


Lung Cancer: Non-Small Cell Metastatic

Sunday, June 4, 2023

8:00 AM-11:00 AM


ERBITUX (cetuximab)




Phase III FIRE-4 study (AIO KRK-0114): Influence of Baseline Liquid Biopsy results in first-line treatment efficacy of FOLFIRI/cetuximab in patients with tissue RAS-WT mCRC


Stintzing S


Oral Abstract Session Gastrointestinal Cancer: Colorectal and Anal

Sunday, June 4, 2023


Early tumor shrinkage (ETS) as clinical factor to select maintenance with cetuximab (cet) alone in RAS/BRAF wild-type (wt) metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) patients (pts): a secondary endpoint analysis of the ERMES study


Orlandi A


Gastrointestinal Cancer: Colorectal and Anal

Monday, June 5, 2023



Prognostic role of TP53 variants in the phase III study of FOLFIRI/cetuximab versus FOLFIRI/cetuximab followed by cetuximab (Cet) alone in first-line therapy of RAS and BRAF wild-type (wt) metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) patients (ERMES study)


Normanno N


Gastrointestinal Cancer: Colorectal and Anal

Monday, June 5, 2023



Advancing the Future of Cancer Care

At Merck, we strive every day to improve the futures of people living with cancer. Our research explores the full potential of promising mechanisms in cancer research, focused on synergistic approaches designed to hit cancer at its core. We are determined to maximize the impact of our standard-of-care treatments and to continue pioneering novel medicines. Our vision is to create a world where more cancer patients will become cancer survivors. Learn more at

About BAVENCIO® (avelumab)

BAVENCIO is a human anti-programmed death ligand-1 (PD-L1) antibody. BAVENCIO has been shown in preclinical models to engage both the adaptive and innate immune functions. By blocking the interaction of PD-L1 with PD-1 receptors, BAVENCIO has been shown to release the suppression of the T cell-mediated antitumor immune response in preclinical models. The Merck-Pfizer strategic alliance regarding BAVENCIO was mutually terminated, with an effective date of June 30, 2023, with Merck regaining exclusive worldwide rights for BAVENCIO.

BAVENCIO Approved Indications

The European Commission (EC) has authorized the use of BAVENCIO as monotherapy for the first-line maintenance treatment of adult patients with locally advanced or metastatic urothelial carcinoma (UC) who are progression-free following platinum-based chemotherapy. BAVENCIO in combination with axitinib is indicated for the first-line treatment of adult patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma (RCC). BAVENCIO is also authorized by the EC for use as a monotherapy for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC).

In the US, BAVENCIO is indicated for the maintenance treatment of patients with locally advanced or metastatic urothelial carcinoma (UC) that has not progressed with first-line platinum-containing chemotherapy. BAVENCIO is also indicated for the treatment of patients with locally advanced or metastatic UC who have disease progression during or following platinum-containing chemotherapy, or have disease progression within 12 months of neoadjuvant or adjuvant treatment with platinum-containing chemotherapy.

BAVENCIO in combination with axitinib is indicated in the US for the first-line treatment of patients with advanced RCC. Additionally, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted accelerated approval for BAVENCIO for the treatment of adults and pediatric patients 12 years and older with metastatic MCC. This indication is approved under accelerated approval based on tumor response rate and duration of response. Continued approval for this indication may be contingent upon verification and description of clinical benefit in confirmatory trials.

BAVENCIO is currently approved for at least one indication for patients in more than 50 countries.

BAVENCIO Safety Profile from the EU Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC)

The special warnings and precautions for use for BAVENCIO monotherapy include infusion-related reactions, as well as immune-related adverse reactions that include pneumonitis and hepatitis (including fatal cases), colitis, pancreatitis (including fatal cases), myocarditis (including fatal cases), endocrinopathies, nephritis and renal dysfunction, and other immune-related adverse reactions. The special warnings and precautions for use for BAVENCIO in combination with axitinib include hepatotoxicity.

The SmPC list of the most common adverse reactions with BAVENCIO monotherapy in patients with solid tumors includes fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, decreased appetite, constipation, infusion-related reactions, weight decreased and vomiting. The list of most common adverse reactions with BAVENCIO in combination with axitinib includes diarrhea, hypertension, fatigue, nausea, dysphonia, decreased appetite, hypothyroidism, cough, headache, dyspnea, and arthralgia.

About TEPMETKO® (tepotinib)

TEPMETKO is a once-daily oral MET inhibitor that inhibits the oncogenic MET receptor signaling caused by MET (gene) alterations. Discovered and developed in-house at Merck, TEPMETKO has a highly selective mechanism of action, with the potential to improve outcomes in aggressive tumors that have a poor prognosis and harbor these specific alterations.

TEPMETKO was the first oral MET inhibitor to receive a regulatory approval anywhere in the world for the treatment of advanced NSCLC harboring MET gene alterations, with its approval in Japan in March 2020. In February 2021, the US Food and Drug Administration granted accelerated approval to TEPMETKO, making it the first and only once-daily oral MET inhibitor approved for patients in the US with metastatic NSCLC with METex14-skipping alterations. In February 2022, the European Commission (EC) approved once-daily oral TEPMETKO as monotherapy for the treatment of adult patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) harboring alterations leading to mesenchymal-epithelial transition factor gene exon 14 (METex14) skipping, who require systemic therapy following prior treatment with immunotherapy and/or platinum-based chemotherapy.

TEPMETKO is available in a number of countries. To meet an urgent clinical need, TEPMETKO is also available in a pilot zone of China in line with the government policy to drive early access for innovative medicines approved outside of China.

Merck is also investigating the potential role of tepotinib in treating patients with NSCLC and acquired resistance due to MET amplification in the Phase II INSIGHT 2 study of tepotinib in combination with osimertinib in MET amplified, advanced or metastatic NSCLC harboring activating EGFR mutations that has progressed following first-line treatment with osimertinib.

TEPMETKO Safety Profile from the EU Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC)

The special warnings and precautions for use for TEPMETKO monotherapy include Interstitial lung disease (ILD) or ILD-like adverse reactions including pneumonitis, increase of liver enzymes (ALT and AST), QTc prolongation, and embryo-fetal toxicity.

The most common adverse reactions in ≥ 20% of exposed to tepotinib at the recommended dose in the target indication are oedema, mainly peripheral oedema, nausea, hypoalbuminemia, diarrhea and increase in creatinine. The most common serious adverse reactions in ≥ 1% of patients are peripheral oedema, generalized oedema and ILD.

About Xevinapant

Xevinapant (formerly known as Debio 1143) is an investigational first-in-class potent oral small-molecule IAP (inhibitor of apoptosis protein) inhibitor for the treatment of LA SCCHN. In preclinical studies, xevinapant restored sensitivity to apoptosis in cancer cells, thereby enhancing the effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Xevinapant, the most clinically advanced IAP inhibitor, improved efficacy outcomes in combination with chemoradiotherapy (CRT), including three-year progression-free survival and five-year survival, compared with placebo plus CRT in a Phase II study in patients with unresected locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (LA SCCHN). In March 2021, Merck gained exclusive rights from Debiopharm to develop and commercialize xevinapant worldwide. Xevinapant is not approved for any use anywhere in the world.

About ERBITUX® (cetuximab)

ERBITUX is an IgG1 monoclonal antibody targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). As a monoclonal antibody, the mode of action of ERBITUX is distinct from standard non-selective chemotherapy treatments in that it specifically targets and binds to the EGFR. This binding inhibits the activation of the receptor and the subsequent signal-transduction pathway, which results in reducing both the invasion of normal tissues by tumor cells and the spread of tumors to new sites. It is also believed to inhibit the ability of tumor cells to repair the damage caused by chemotherapy and radiotherapy and to inhibit the formation of new blood vessels inside tumors, which appears to lead to an overall suppression of tumor growth. Based on in vitro evidence, ERBITUX also targets cytotoxic immune effector cells towards EGFR-expressing tumor cells (antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity [ADCC]).

ERBITUX has already obtained market authorization in over 100 countries worldwide for the treatment of RAS wild-type metastatic colorectal cancer and for the treatment of squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. Merck licensed the right to market ERBITUX, a registered trademark of ImClone LLC, outside the U.S. and Canada from ImClone LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Eli Lilly and Company, in 1998.

All Merck press releases are distributed by e-mail at the same time they become available on the Merck website. Please go to to register online, change your selection or discontinue this service.

About Merck

Merck, a leading science and technology company, operates across life science, healthcare and electronics. More than 64,000 employees work to make a positive difference to millions of people’s lives every day by creating more joyful and sustainable ways to live. From providing products and services that accelerate drug development and manufacturing as well as discovering unique ways to treat the most challenging diseases to enabling the intelligence of devices – the company is everywhere. In 2022, Merck generated sales of € 22.2 billion in 66 countries.

Scientific exploration and responsible entrepreneurship have been key to Merck’s technological and scientific advances. This is how Merck has thrived since its founding in 1668. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed company. Merck holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the business sectors of Merck operate as MilliporeSigma in life science, EMD Serono in healthcare, and EMD Electronics in electronics.


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Your Contact

Phone: +1 (781) 427-4351

CORRECTING and REPLACING Belkin Introduces the Ultimate Power Bank – the BoostCharge™ Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K

 Featuring fast charging for Apple Watch and 20W USB-C PD for charging iPhone anytime, anywhere Belkin

(BUSINESS WIRE)-- The sentence just beneath the bullets should read "The BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K is now available for $99.99 USD on, and coming soon to select retailers worldwide." (instead of "The BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K is now available for $99.99 USD on")

The updated release reads:


Featuring fast charging for Apple Watch and 20W USB-C PD for charging iPhone anytime, anywhere

Belkin, a leading consumer electronics brand for 40 years, today announces a first-of-its-kind power bank providing fast charge capabilities for newer Apple Watch models1 and iPhone simultaneously, on-the-go. Able to fully charge the Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Series 7 from 0% to 80% in about 45 minutes, and Apple Watch Ultra 0% to 80% in about an hour,2 the BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger is the perfect solution for portable power in a pinch.

The powerful new charger was designed in California by Belkin’s award-winning design team and intricately engineered to fit most Apple Watch band sizes and styles. It leverages the latest in technology to charge the Apple Watch Series 8 fourteen times, or iPhone 14 twice3.

Product features:

Supports fast charging for Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Series 7 from 0% to 80% in about 45 minutes, and Apple Watch Ultra 0% to 80% in about an hour2

Built with a 20W USB-C PD port for fast charging the power bank itself as well as an additional device

Provides up to 36 hours of video playback for iPhone 144 with 10,000mAh cell capacity

Built with overcharge protection and fully certified by USB-IF and MFi to deliver safe, fast, efficient power

Supports wireless charging for AirPods Pro (2nd generation)

Includes 12-inch USB-C cable for charging power bank

Ships in plastic-free retail packaging

Connected Equipment Warranty covers up to $2500 for peace of mind

The BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K is now available for $99.99 USD on, and coming soon to select retailers worldwide.

Media kit is available for download HERE.

About Belkin

Belkin is an accessories market leader delivering power, protection, productivity, connectivity, audio, security, and home automation solutions for a broad range of consumer electronics and enterprise environments. Designed in Southern California and sold in more than 100 countries around the world, Belkin has been a market leader and innovator for 40 years. Its dedication to people-inspired design and quality informs everything from user testing and prototyping process to regulatory compliance, manufacturing and warranty programs. In 2018 Belkin International merged with Foxconn Interconnect Technology to broaden its global influence while maintaining its steadfast focus on R&D, community, education and sustainability.


1 Fast charging is only compatible with Apple Watch Series 7, Apple Watch Series 8, and Apple Watch Ultra. Other models will have regular charge times.

2 Testing conducted by Belkin in October 2022; devices tested with latest watchOS 9.0.1 software. Actual results will vary depending on varying factors, including device age, model and usage environment, for individual users.

3 Data based on internal lab testing. Actual results will vary depending on varying factors for individual users.

4 Maximum additional video playback hours calculated by comparing the cell capacity of this power bank with the maximum video playback hours achievable by the iPhone 14 under normal conditions. Actual results will vary depending on varying factors for individual users.


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Jen Wei

VP of Global Communications and Corporate Development

ExaGrid Wins 3 Industry Awards at Network Computing Awards 2023

 2023 Awards Mark ExaGrid’s 5th Consecutive Win at the Annual Awards Ceremony

(BUSINESS WIRE)--ExaGrid®, the industry’s only Tiered Backup Storage solution, today announced that the company was honored with three industry awards, including Bench Tested Product of the Year – Hardware Category, Company of the Year, and Storage Product of the Year, during the Network Computing Awards ceremony, held in London on May 18, 2023.

This year’s awards mark the fifth year of wins for ExaGrid at the Network Computing Awards—the third consecutive year that ExaGrid has won the Storage Product of the Year award, and the fourth consecutive year that ExaGrid has won the Company of Year award.

The Company of the Year and Storage Product of the Year awards are determined by public vote. The Bench Tested Product of the Year – Hardware Category award was chosen by the editorial team at Network Computing Magazine based on an independent product review of ExaGrid’s advanced integration with Veeam and support of Veeam’s features, including Veeam Fast Clone (as of Veeam V12, released in 2023).

“We are very honored to win these three awards. Congratulations to all of the winners of the Network Computing Awards 2023, and many thanks to everyone who voted for us and to the editorial team at Network Computing,” said Bill Andrews, President and CEO of ExaGrid. “ExaGrid continues to innovate its product, offering a next-generation approach to backup storage that provides organizations with the best in data protection: the fastest backup and restore performance, the only scale-out architecture to accommodate data growth, comprehensive security and ransomware recovery, and industry-leading customer support, all at the lowest cost up front and over time. We are proud of our Tiered Backup Storage and grateful for the continued recognition that we have received over the years.”

About ExaGrid

ExaGrid provides Tiered Backup Storage with a unique disk-cache Landing Zone, long-term retention repository, and scale-out architecture. ExaGrid’s Landing Zone provides for the fastest backups, restores, and instant VM recoveries. The Repository Tier offers the lowest cost for long-term retention. ExaGrid’s scale-out architecture includes full appliances and ensures a fixed-length backup window as data grows, eliminating expensive forklift upgrades and product obsolescence. ExaGrid offers the only two-tiered backup storage approach with a non-network-facing tier, delayed deletes, and immutable objects to recover from ransomware attacks.

ExaGrid has physical sales and pre-sales systems engineers in the following countries: Argentina, Australia, Benelux, Brazil, Canada, Chile, CIS, Colombia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Iberia, India, Israel, Japan, Mexico, Nordics, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, and other regions.

Visit us at and connect with us on LinkedIn. See what our customers have to say about their own ExaGrid experiences and learn why they now spend significantly less time on backup storage in our customer success stories. ExaGrid is proud of our +81 NPS score!

ExaGrid is a registered trademark of ExaGrid Systems, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective holders.


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Mary Domenichelli