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Keryx Biopharmaceuticals Stockholders Approve Merger with Akebia Therapeutics

BOSTON, Dec. 11, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: KERX), a biopharmaceutical company focused on bringing innovative medicines to people with kidney disease, today announced that Keryx stockholders voted in favor of adopting the merger agreement among Keryx and inter alia Akebia Therapeutics, Inc.

Separately today, Akebia announced that its stockholders voted to approve the share issuance proposal relating to the merger with Keryx at a special meeting of Akebia stockholders.

“The support of our stockholders for this transaction is gratifying,” said Michael W. Rogers, chairperson of Keryx’s board of directors. “Together, Keryx and Akebia have a promising future as a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company committed to improving the lives of people afflicted with renal diseases and creating value for our stockholders.”

“Over the last five months, the Keryx team has been working hard, planning for the completion of the merger in addition to carrying out their daily responsibilities,” said Jodie P. Morrison, interim chief executive officer and director of Keryx. “I am extremely proud of the entire team and their dedication to working towards a seamless closing and transition. Keryx has an outstanding group of employees and it has been a pleasure to lead the organization during this interim period.”

Under the terms of the merger agreement, upon completion of the merger, Keryx stockholders will receive 0.37433 common shares of Akebia for each share of Keryx they own.

The merger of Akebia and Keryx is subject to the satisfaction of various closing conditions. Keryx and Akebia expect the merger to close on December 12, 2018.

About Keryx Biopharmaceuticals

Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc., headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, is focused on the development and commercialization of innovative medicines that provide unique and meaningful advantages to people with kidney disease. The Keryx team works with passion to advance the care of people with this complex disease. This dedication has resulted in two FDA-approved indications for Keryx’s first medicine, Auryxia (ferric citrate) tablets. For more information about Keryx, please visit www.keryx.com.

Forward Looking Statements

This document contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities law. Such statements are based upon current plans, estimates and expectations that are subject to various risks and uncertainties. The inclusion of forward-looking statements should not be regarded as a representation that such plans, estimates and expectations will be achieved. Words such as “anticipate,” “create,” “expect,” “project,” “intend,” “believe,” “may,” “will,” “should,” “plan,” “could,” “target,” “contemplate,” “estimate,” “position,” “predict,” “potential,” “opportunity,” “working to,” “look forward” and words and terms of similar substance used in connection with any discussion of future plans, actions or events identify forward-looking statements. All statements, other than historical facts, including the ability of the parties to complete the merger; expectations for the combined company; the value proposition of the transaction for stockholders; and the consummation of the merger and the potential benefits of the merger are forward looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from Akebia’s and Keryx’s plans, estimates or expectations could include, but are not limited to: (i) conditions to the closing of the merger may not be satisfied; (ii) the merger may involve unexpected costs, liabilities or delays; (iii) the effect of the announcement of the merger on the ability of Akebia or Keryx to retain and hire key personnel and maintain relationships with customers, suppliers and others with whom Akebia or Keryx does business, or on Akebia’s or Keryx’s operating results and business generally; (iv) Akebia’s or Keryx’s respective businesses may suffer as a result of uncertainty surrounding the merger and disruption of management’s attention due to the merger; (v) the outcome of any legal proceedings related to the merger; (vi) Akebia or Keryx may be adversely affected by other economic, business, and/or competitive factors, including the receipt by Keryx of a notice letters on October 31, 2018, and November 6, 2018, regarding abbreviated new drug applications submitted to the FDA requesting approval to market, sell and use a generic version of the Auryxia; (vii) the occurrence of any event, change or other circumstances that could give rise to the termination of the merger agreement; (viii) risks that the merger disrupts current plans and operations and the potential difficulties in employee retention as a result of the merger; (ix) risks that the anticipated benefits of the merger or other commercial opportunities may otherwise not be fully realized or may take longer to realize than expected; (x) the impact of legislative, regulatory, competitive and technological changes, including the recent changes to reimbursement coverage for Auryxia that could have a material adverse effect on Auryxia sales and profitability; (xi) expectations for future clinical trials, the timing and potential outcomes of clinical trials and interactions with regulatory authorities; and (xii) other risks to the consummation of the merger, including the risk that the merger will not be consummated within the expected time period or at all. Additional factors that may affect the future results of Akebia and Keryx are set forth in their respective filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), including each of Akebia’s and Keryx’s most recently filed Annual Report on Form 10-K, subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K,  the definitive joint proxy statement/prospectus filed by Akebia and Keryx and other filings with the SEC, which are available on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov. See in particular “Risk Factors” in the joint proxy statement/prospectus, Item 1A of Akebia’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2018, under the heading “Risk Factors” and Item 1A of Keryx’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2018, under the heading “Risk Factors.” The risks and uncertainties described above and in the definitive joint proxy statement/prospectus, Akebia’s most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q and Keryx’s most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q are not exclusive and further information concerning Akebia and Keryx and their respective businesses, including factors that potentially could materially affect their respective businesses, financial condition or operating results, may emerge from time to time. Readers are urged to consider these factors carefully in evaluating these forward-looking statements, and not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements. Readers should also carefully review the risk factors described in other documents that Akebia and Keryx file from time to time with the SEC. The forward-looking statements in these materials speak only as of the date of these materials. Except as required by law, Akebia and Keryx assume no obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements for any reason, even if new information becomes available in the future.

CONTACT: Keryx Biopharmaceuticals Contact
Amy Sullivan
Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs
T: (617) 466-3519
investors@keryx.com
Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - 12:00