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History of Tillotts

More than 50 years of passion for GI-health

Over 50 Years for GI-Health

Tillotts was established in London in the 1950s as a family-owned pharmacy known as J.B. Tillott Ltd Chemists. The business gradually expanded to become a wholesaler and then an importer of pharmaceutical products, in particular gastric ulcer treatments.

During the 1960s, after the foundation of Tillotts Laboratories Ltd, Tillotts became the UK market leader in gastric ulcer treatments. The company acquired the worldwide rights to Asacol™ and Colpermin™, two patent-protected products for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome, respectively.

Since then, the company has continued to expand in the field of gastrointestinal (GI) diseases and has focused on building its network of affiliates and gastroenterology-focused partners to create a strong, trusted partner in GI-health. In 2015, Tillotts acquired from AstraZeneca the global rights (ex-USA) for Entocort™, a medicinal product indicated for the treatment of Crohn’s disease and, in some markets, ulcerative colitis, that is complementary to Asacol™.

Please find the full history of Tillotts below.

1950s

1950s

  • The story of Tillotts starts in London when the pharmacy known as J.B. Tillott Ltd. was opened.
  • The business gradually expands to a wholesaler and importer of pharmaceutical products.

1960s

  • Tillotts Laboratories Ltd. is founded in the UK in 1963, as a distributor for herbal gastric ulcer treatments.

1970s

  • Tillotts becomes the UK market leader in gastric ulcer treatments.
  • Tillotts in-licenses the worldwide rights to Asacol™ and Colpermin™ two patent-protected, innovative products for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

1980s

  • Tillotts launches Colpermin™ in the UK in 1981.
  • Tillotts Laboratories Ltd. develops Asacol™ tablets from 1982 to 1984.
  • From 1984, Tillotts divests Asacol™ product rights including patent rights and trademarks for the USA, Canada, Italy and Benelux.
  • Tillotts launches Asacol™ 400 mg in Switzerland in 1984 and in the UK in 1985.

1986

  • Tillotts Pharma AG is established and the company relocates to northwest Switzerland in Hölstein (BL), identified as the best location for a pharmaceutical company due to its proximity to Basel, one of the world’s major centres of the pharmaceutical and life-science industries.

1987

  • Tillotts divests the UK Asacol™ business.

1988

  • Tillotts launches Asacol™ under the brand name Asacolon® in Ireland and as Lixacol® in Spain.

1989

  • Tillotts divests the rights to the product Colpermin™ for the UK and Ireland. The rights to Colpermin™ in all other territories remain with Tillotts.
  • Tillotts moves to Ziefen, near Basel, where a manufacturing facility is created primarily for Colpermin™.
  • The Swiss Asacol™ business is divested and Tillotts registers the brand name Asazine® in Switzerland.
  • Tillotts launches Asacol™ in Denmark.

1990s

  • Tillotts launches Asacol™ in Norway in 1990, Sweden in 1992, Finland in 1993 and the Czech Republic in 1995
  • In 1995, Tillotts Pharma AG is sold to Medeva PLC a multi-national pharma group (now part of UCB).

1999

  • A Management Buy-Out (MBO) re-establishes Tillotts as a privately owned company.

2001

  • Tillotts and its local distribution partner launch the first Asacol™ line extension, Fivasa® 800 mg, in France.

2003

  • Asacol™ line extension – Tillotts launches Asacol™ 800 mg in Denmark, Sweden and Norway.

2004

  • Tillotts signs a licence agreement with Tokyo-based Zeria Pharmaceutical, a mid-sized Japanese pharmaceutical company, for development and commercialisation of Asacol™ in Japan.
  • Tillotts establishes its first subsidiary in Ireland (promotional activities begin in 2005).
  • Asacol™ line extension – Tillotts launches Asacol™ 800 mg in Finland.

2007

  • Tillotts starts a research collaboration programme with the UCL School of Pharmacy – University College London (Prof. Dr Abdul Basit) for the “Application of the Phloral™ coating technology to new company proprietary products”.
  • Licensing agreement with the UCL School of Pharmacy to use the Phloral™ technology platform for the coating of new company proprietary products.

2008

  • Thomas A. Tóth von Kiskér is appointed as CEO of Tillotts.
  • Tillotts establishes a subsidiary in Sweden (promotional activities begin in 2009) covering the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden) and the Baltic States (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania).

2009

  • Exit of the management-buy-out: sale of Tillotts Pharma to Zeria Pharmaceuticals.
  • Tillotts moves its headquarters from Ziefen (BL) to Rheinfelden (AG).
  • Asacol™ is launched in Japan by Zeria and its co-marketing partner, Kyowa Hakko Kirin.
  • Foundation of Tillotts Services, an operating division of Tillotts Pharma AG that offers manufacturing services to pharmaceutical, biotechnology and nutraceutical industries.

2010

  • Tillotts establishes its subsidiaries in the UK and the Czech Republic, respectively.
  • Tillotts launches Octasa® 800 mg in the UK.

2011

  • Tillotts becomes a corporate member of the European Crohn’s and Colitis Organisation (ECCO).
  • Tillotts in-licenses Simtomax® and secures contractual distribution rights for the UK, Ireland, Spain, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway and Germany.
  • Tillotts establishes a subsidiary in Spain (promotional activities start in 2012).
  • Tillotts starts a research collaboration programme with the University of Applied Sciences Northwest Switzerland (Prof. Dr Martin Kuentz) for the “Development of Novel Micro-gels into Lipid-Based Drug Delivery Systems (LBDDS) for Drug Delivery of Macromolecules”.
  • Agreement with Augurix SA for the commercialisation of Simtomax® in dedicated key European markets.

2012

  • Tillotts begins a second research collaboration programme with the University of Applied Sciences Northwest Switzerland (Prof. Dr Georg Lipps) for the “Development of in vitro tests for assessing colonic delivery of enteric coated formulations”
  • Tillotts starts a research collaboration programme with the University of Basel (Prof. Dr Jörg Huwyler, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences) supported by the Swiss Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI) for the development of Innovative multi-particulate Drug Delivery Systems using Porous Microparticles.
  • Octasa® 400 mg is launched in the UK.
  • Acquisition of the rights for Klocke Pharma Service GmbH’s proprietary bowel preparations and laxatives.

2013

  • Tillotts establishes a subsidiary in Germany.
  • Tillotts launches Asacol™ 800 mg in the Czech Republic.
  • Tillotts Pharm/Tillotts Services begins a collaboration with Qualicaps®, a global supplier of two-piece hard capsules.
  • Tillotts starts a second research collaboration with the UCL School of Pharmacy – University College London (Prof. Dr Abdul Basit) for assessing the stability of therapeutic proteins in gastrointestinal conditions.

2014

  • Tillotts signs a licensing agreement with Cancer Prevention Pharmaceuticals Inc. for the development and commercialization of a new treatment for familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP).
  • Tillotts sponsors an ECCO Symposium for the first time.
  • Tillotts launches VistaPrep®, a bowel cleanser indicated for the cleansing of the bowel for colonoscopy, in Germany.
  • Tillotts UK launches Octasa® 400 mg (with triethyl citrate [TEC]).
  • Tillotts co-founds with Qualicaps®, a research collaboration programme at the University of Applied Sciences Northwest Switzerland (Prof. Dr Martin Kuentz) for investigating the compatibility of different types of hard shell capsules with lipid formulations containing aqueous compartments.

2015

  • Tillotts launches Asacol™ 800 mg in Spain.
  • Tillotts partners with leading medical experts to develop the UCandME™ toolbox to further support the gastroenterology community in improving patient adherence and education.
  • Tillotts becomes a corporate member of the International Organization for the Study of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IOIBD).
  • Tillotts acquires from AstraZeneca the global rights (ex-USA) for Entocort®, a medicinal product indicated for the treatment of Crohn’s disease and, in some markets, ulcerative colitis, that is complementary to Asacol™.
  • Tillotts signs a licensing agreement with Numab AG.
  • Asacol™ represents more than 2 million patient years.
  • Tillotts opens a second office in Rheinfelden, Switzerland.
  • Tillotts establishes its seventh subsidiary in France.

2016

  • Tillotts celebrates 30 years of activity in Switzerland.

Today

  • Tillotts markets its products in over 65 countries through a network of affiliates and distribution partners including Zeria, its parent company.