Astorg and Amulet Capital Partners | June 01, 2022
Astorg and Amulet Capital Partners announce that they have signed a binding agreement whereby Astorg will acquire OPEN Health, a leading global provider of scientific communications and market access services to the pharmaceutical industry.
Established in 2011 and headquartered in London, UK, OPEN Health is a key partner to its customers in helping them develop strategies for evidence generation and data communication by leveraging their extensive scientific knowledge and relentless focus on quality. Together, this approach consistently delivers best-in-class scientific communications, health economics and outcomes research (HEOR) and market access services to an ever-increasing audience.
OPEN Health has more than 1,000 employees in 15 locations and six countries, across North America, Europe and Asia. OPEN Health serves over 170 life sciences customers, including 48 of the top 50 pharmaceutical companies. OPEN Health’s existing management team, led by CEO Rob Barker, will continue to lead the organization, building on a strong track-record of organic growth and strategic acquisitions.
"We are excited to build on the momentum across our business and to continue executing with our new partners at Astorg on a shared long-term vision to bring deep scientific solutions that support our clients in driving positive health outcomes. We are grateful for the strong partnership of the Amulet team over the last three and a half years and for all that we have accomplished in expanding our industry-leading capabilities across disciplines. We continue to be very well positioned to drive innovation and growth, and we look forward to embarking on this next chapter for OPEN Health."
Rob Barker, CEO, OPEN Health
Building on OPEN Health’s leading service offerings, Astorg will invest in the development of the business across its main existing offerings, and beyond, to continue delivering best-in-class scientific content to OPEN Health’s customer base and help them harness the full value of their most important assets.
"OPEN Health is a very impressive company. We have been following the development of the medical affairs space for a long time as the function evolved from a supportive to a central role and identified OPEN Health as a global leader in the making. We have been impressed with its outstanding reputation and the trust it benefits from its customer base,” said Judith Charpentier, Partner and Head of Healthcare, Astorg. “We look forward to supporting Rob and the OPEN Health management team in continuing to build a global leading scientific focused medical affairs platform, expanding the platform through both organic initiatives and additional strategic acquisitions,” said Olivier Lieven, Director, Astorg.
Ramsey Frank, President and Managing Partner of Amulet, said, “OPEN Health was built around Amulet’s investment thesis in medical affairs: the current generation of drugs is fundamentally different from prior generations, and these therapies need to be brought to market with the support of high science communications and data analytics. We brought OPEN Health together very intentionally via three acquisitions to create a purpose-built suite of services to meet pharma’s evolving needs.”
Amulet Partner Nick Amigone continued, “We could not be more grateful to Rob Barker and his team for the outstanding job they have done in building a true industry leader.”
The terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals.
Houlihan Lokey served as financial advisor to OPEN Health and Rothschild & Co advised Astorg on the transaction.
About OPEN Health
OPEN Health brings together deep scientific knowledge, global understanding, and broad specialist expertise to support our clients in improving health outcomes and patient wellbeing. We are united as one flexible organization, harnessing the power of the collective to solve complex challenges.
Astorg is a European private equity firm with over €17 billion of assets under management. Astorg works with entrepreneurs and management teams to acquire market leading global companies headquartered in Europe or the US, providing them with the strategic guidance, governance and capital they need to achieve their growth plans. Enjoying a distinct entrepreneurial culture, a long-term shareholder perspective and a lean decision-making body, Astorg has valuable industry expertise in healthcare, software, technology, business services and technology-based industrial companies. Astorg has offices in London, Paris, New York, Frankfurt, Milan and Luxembourg.
About Amulet Capital Partners, LP
Amulet Capital Partners, LP is a middle-market private equity investment firm based in Greenwich, CT, focused exclusively on the healthcare sector. Amulet seeks to achieve long-term capital appreciation through privately negotiated investments in companies. Amulet Capital Partners focuses on those segments it believes have the most attractive long-term fundamentals with a target investment size generally between $25 million to $150 million.
Hovione | February 23, 2022
Hovione, the leader in spray drying and particle engineering, announced a strategic partnership with Zerion Pharma to market and commercialize Dispersome®, Zerion´s proprietary solubility enhancement technology platform.
Zerion´s innovative Dispersome® technology builds on a new concept of increasing drug solubility by using natural protein-based excipients to formulate APIs into amorphous solid dispersions (ASDs) by spray drying. By combining Dispersome® technology with Hovione's unique spray drying capabilities, experience in development, scale-up and GMP manufacturing, Hovione further strengthens its leadership in amorphous solid dispersions and shows its commitment to innovative solutions to overcome one of the most prevalent challenges faced by the industry: low drug solubility.
"We are extremely pleased to have entered into this partnership with Zerion whom we recognize as a very innovative company in the field of oral drug formulations. By joining forces, Zerion and Hovione will be able to bring Dispersome® to the market faster. We look forward to applying the technology in collaboration with our customers and partners in our effort to develop novel drugs with strong benefits to patients. Hovione will continue to pursue opportunities to enhance its offering around core areas of expertise such as particle engineering and inhalation by partnering with companies and research institutions developing innovative drug formulation technologies, like Dispersome®".
Jean-Luc Herbeaux, Hovione´s Chief Operating Officer
Zerion´s CEO, Ole Wiborg, sees a strong synergy in the partnership and expects it to generate new pharma partnerships. "We consider Hovione the global leader in the field of producing amorphous solid dispersions by spray-drying. More importantly for us, this leadership has resulted in Hovione being, over the last 5 years, the main commercial manufacturer of novel FDA-approved drugs formulated as amorphous solid dispersions. Incorporating these competencies in our offering to the pharma industry both validates the strength of our Dispersome® platform and provides us and our pharma partners immediate access to the highest quality in upscaling and commercial GMP manufacturing." says Ole Wiborg.
The announcement of this partnership follows Hovione's communication on a further expansion with an expected investment of $170 million in assets worldwide and shows the company's commitment to also expand its technology platforms. Hovione is investing both in new assets and innovative technologies to meet customer demand for integrated and differentiated services in drug substance manufacturing, particle engineering and most recently drug product manufacturing.
Hovione is an international company with over 60 years of experience as a Contract Development and Manufacturing Organization (CDMO) with a fully integrated offering of services for drug substance, drug product intermediate and drug product. The company has four FDA inspected sites in the USA, Portugal, Ireland and China and development laboratories in Lisbon, Portugal and New Jersey, USA. Hovione provides pharmaceutical customers services for the development and compliant manufacture of innovative drugs, including highly potent compounds, and customized product solution across the entire drug life cycle. In the inhalation area, Hovione is the only independent company offering a complete range of services, from API, formulation development and devices. Hovione is a company with a culture based on innovation, quality and delivery. Hovione was the first Chemical/ Pharmaceutical Company to become a Certified B Corp, is a member of Rx-360, EFCG and participates actively in industry quality improvement initiatives to lead new global industry standards.
About Zerion Pharma ApS
Zerion has pioneered the Dispersome® technology that greatly enhances the solubility of poorly soluble, oral drugs and improves bioavailability and therapeutic outcomes for the patients. The Dispersome® technology is based on preparing stable amorphous formulations by mixing high loads of the drug compound with beta-lactoglobulin, a sustainable and biodegradable by-product from cheese production. Zerion develops proprietary drug formulations and offers the Dispersome® technology to established pharma companies as a means to solve their most challenging drug solubility problems.
Element Materials Technology | January 15, 2022
Element Materials Technology (Element) completed its sixth life sciences-focused acquisition of 2021, with the formal completion of the acquisition of JMI Laboratories. Element has now built out its expertise and capability for pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical customers, expanding to a team of more than 1,000 experts in 23 facilities across North America and Europe.
This significant step change in pharmaceutical and medical testing capabilities from Element forms part of its broader strategic shift to increase its global presence in Life Sciences and Connected Technologies.
“Our expansion into life sciences and connected technologies over the last two years has seen us gain a leadership position in these strategically important end-markets. As we celebrate 10 years of being a standalone Element business, we see more and more opportunities to work closely with our customers throughout their product and testing lifecycles.”
Jo Wetz, Element CEO
Cherie Gudz, Vice President, Life Sciences Americas, said: “In a world still dealing with a pandemic, the life sciences sector has never been more vital. The six acquisitions this past year alone cements Element’s commitment to continue to build a scale business in this vital sector, which now forms our largest global end-market. We are thrilled to have JMI’s team and expertise join the Element family”.
Based in North Liberty, Iowa, JMI is a market leader in antimicrobial resistance monitoring studies utilized for US-FDA regulatory and new drug application submissions, through their proprietary SENTRY Antimicrobial Surveillance Program. It offers microbiology and molecular testing services to assist in the development of new antimicrobials and clinical trial support. The Company is CLIA accredited and able to test under GLP conditions. The business is notable for its team of highly scientific and well-published industry recognized experts in the field, including 10 MD/PhDs with extensive knowledge of microbiology and antimicrobials, and can consult on a broad range of scientific topics covering epidemiology, mechanisms of resistance in bacterial and fungal organisms, microbiology diagnostics and susceptibility testing methods.