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KT, Hanmi invest in developer of digital therapeutics

June 19, 2022 - 15:17 By Kan Hyeong-woo
(From left) Woo Jong-soo, CEO of Hanmi Pharmaceutical, Kim Dae-jin, CEO of Digital Pharm and Song Jae-ho, vice president of KT pose for a photo after their announcement of the launch of the three-way alliance at Hanmi Tower in Seoul on Friday. (Hanmi Pharmaceutical)
KT and Hanmi Pharmaceutical have jointly invested in digital therapeutics developer Digital Pharm, officials said Sunday.

With the investment, KT will be in charge of developing platforms for digital therapeutics, drafting business strategies and providing pipelines. Meanwhile, Hanmi plans to maximize synergetic impact through hospital-specialized marketing and supporting the authorization of digital medical devices.

Digital Pharm’s first projects are in digital therapeutics and electroceuticals. The digital therapeutics project will be used to treat alcohol and nicotine addiction, while the electroceuticals project will treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The company will begin clinical trials for alcohol and nicotine digital therapeutics in the second half of this year, according to officials.

Digital therapeutics are evidence-based therapeutic interventions driven by software to prevent, manage or treat disorders and diseases. Electroceuticals refer to devices that treat illness with electrical impulses.

The investment is the first collaboration between a South Korean information and communications technology firm, a pharmaceutical company and a medical institute. Digital Pharm is a subsidiary of the Catholic University of Korea’s holdings company.

According to the companies, the global market for digital therapeutics is expected to reach 22.4 trillion won ($17.3 billion) by 2028 with an average annual growth rate of 23 percent.

“We will do our best to establish a successful business model by combining Hanmi’s long-accumulated capabilities in developing new drugs, getting government approvals and marketing,” said Woo Jong-soo, CEO of Hanmi Pharmaceutical.

Song Jae-ho, KT’s vice president, said that the three-way alliance is expected to create and lead the country’s ecosystem of digital therapeutics and electroceuticals.