Galapagos was founded in 1999 as a joint venture between Crucell and Tibotec. From the start, Galapagos operated a hybrid business model, combining internal discovery programs with service activities. In 2002 the Company raised €23.4 million in a private placement. In May 2005, the Company raised €22.4 million through an initial public offering on Euronext Brussels and Amsterdam (ticker symbol: GLPG). Galapagos raised an additional €144 million through private placements in 2006, 2009, 2010, and 2013 and a further €4.4 million through an equity investment by GlaxoSmithKline in 2007. Euronext Liffe initiated trading in options for the Galapagos ordinary share on 30 April 2013, under the ticker symbol GLS. On 1 April 2014, Galapagos sold BioFocus and Argenta to Charles River Laboratories International, Inc., giving Galapagos an R&D pipeline focus. Galapagos listed on the US NASDAQ (ticker symbol: GLPG) in May 2015, raising an additional €279 million gross proceeds in a concurrent private placement.

R&D operations

In 2006, Galapagos acquired ProSkelia in Romainville, France, from ProStrakan via an all-share transaction. With ProSkelia, Galapagos obtained R&D operations and a product portfolio of products focused on musculoskeletal diseases (osteoporosis, cachexia and bone metastasis). In 2010, Galapagos acquired the Zagreb research operations from GSK. This site started as an internal outsourcing center but was later refocused to become a drug discovery fee-for-service business. Renamed Fidelta, the Zagreb operation is executing a business plan to reach profitability.

Galapagos entered into long term alliances for the majority of its research programs with top pharma companies. These risk sharing alliances enabled Galapagos to build a pipeline of more than 30 programs, based predominantly on proprietary targets that the Company has identified. Through these alliances, Galapagos is eligible to receive substantial success-dependent milestone revenue plus up to double-digit royalties on commercial products, and geographic rights in certain alliances.

Former service division

In October 2005 Galapagos acquired BioFocus, a drug discovery company based in Saffron Walden, UK. In 2006, Galapagos acquired the drug discovery operations of Discovery Partners International and UK-based Inpharmatica Ltd. Galapagos acquired the structure-based drug discovery business of Sareum Holdings plc in 2008. On 1 April 2014, Galapagos sold BioFocus and Argenta to Charles River Laboratories International, Inc.