Akebia Therapeutics and Keryx Biopharmaceuticals announce Adrian Adams as Chairperson for combined Company upon completion of their merger

– USA, MA –  Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq:AKBA) and Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:KERX) today announced that Adrian Adams will serve as the Chairperson of the Akebia Board of Directors, effective upon completion of the proposed merger of Akebia and Keryx.

Mr. Adams has over 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. He has been instrumental in launching and commercializing major global biopharmaceutical products. In addition, Mr. Adams has a record of driving successful corporate development activities including financings, product in-licenses and company mergers and acquisitions.

“The two company boards conducted a thorough search for a Chairperson with a combination of public company leadership experience, as well as drug development and commercialization expertise, and unanimously concluded that Adrian is the right person for the role. Adrian is a well-respected and outstanding leader who has created substantial value for shareholders in his past roles,” said Muneer A. Satter, current Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Akebia. “The combined company will benefit greatly from his experience and insight.”

“From our perspective, Adrian brings the perfect combination of development and commercialization experience,” said Michael W. Rogers, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Keryx. “We believe that Adrian will help create substantial value for our shareholders.”

John P. Butler, President and Chief Executive Officer of Akebia, said, “I look forward to working with Adrian and our other talented directors to position the combined company as a leader within the renal space, develop and deliver therapies to patients with kidney disease, and generate long-term value for shareholders.”

Upon completion of the merger, the Board of Directors will consist of ten members with Mr. Adams as Chairperson. As previously announced, the Board will include current Keryx Board members Mark J. Enyedy, Steven C. Gilman, Michael T. Heffernan, Jodie Morrison and Michael W. Rogers and current Akebia Board members John P. Butler, Scott A. Canute, and Cynthia Smith. Additionally, current Akebia board member Maxine Gowen will continue to serve as a member of the Board.

The merger of Akebia and Keryx is subject to the satisfaction of various closing conditions, including approval by shareholders of both companies.

About Adrian Adams

Mr. Adams currently serves as Chief Executive Officer and a director of Aralez Pharmaceuticals Inc., a pharmaceutical company that focuses on the development, acquisition and commercialization of cardiovascular, pain and other therapies. From May 2015 to February 2016, Mr. Adams was the Chief Executive Officer and a director of POZEN, Inc. Previously, Mr. Adams served as Chief Executive Officer, President and a director of Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a specialty biopharmaceutical company, from December 2011 until January 2015, when it was acquired by Endo International plc. Prior to these roles, Mr. Adams served in several Chief Executive Officer positions at leading specialty pharmaceutical companies including Kos Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Sepracor, Inc. and Inspire Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Mr. Adams has also held general management and senior international and national marketing positions at Novartis, SmithKline Beecham and ICI (now part of AstraZeneca). Mr. Adams also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Directors at AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company that engages in the development and commercialization of therapies of the treatment of acute pain.

“I am excited and honored to serve as the Chairperson of the combined company after the merger,” said Mr. Adams. “Following the merger, Akebia will be a fully integrated, leading renal company with the potential to deliver an all oral treatment approach for patients with anemia due to chronic kidney disease. I look forward to working with the Board and management team to improve patients’ lives and deliver enhanced value for our shareholders.”

About Akebia Therapeutics

Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, focused on delivering innovative therapies to patients with kidney disease through hypoxia-inducible factor biology.

For more, visit www.akebia.com

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, visit www.keryx.com

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