Investing in expansion of best-in-class bioanalytical CRO services and accelerating global growth

International private equity firm Cinven today announces that it has agreed to invest in BioAgilytix (‘the Company’), a leading global contract research organisation (‘CRO’) providing bioanalytical services to pharmaceutical and biotech companies. Cobepa, the current majority investor, will re-invest a significant minority stake alongside Cinven. Financial details of the transaction are not disclosed.

Founded in 2008, BioAgilytix focuses on complex large molecule bioanalytical services, particularly for fast growing and innovative treatments, including cell and gene therapies. It has a global team of highly experienced scientific and quality assurance professionals that deliver leading scientific capabilities underpinned by proven data integrity and deep regulatory expertise to support all phases of global clinical trials. Headquartered in Durham, North Carolina, BioAgilytix is a global platform with operations across the United States, Europe and Australia and employs 870 staff across its five locations.

The Cinven Healthcare team identified BioAgilytix as a highly attractive investment opportunity given:

  • Attractive, rapidly growing end market: Large molecule bioanalytical services is one of the fastest growing areas within healthcare given the continued shift in global R&D spend towards innovative large molecule and cell and gene therapies, which have the exciting potential to address previously unmet medical conditions.
  • Best-in-class provider with reputation for market-leading expertise: The increasing complexity of new therapies is driving biopharma companies to look for specialist CROs like BioAgilytix to support their bioanalytical needs. The Company’s longstanding emphasis on scientific leadership has allowed it to attract a world-class team which comprises more than 50% PhD and Masters-level scientists with an average of more than 10 years of post-graduate laboratory experience.
  • Buy and build platform and further internationalisation opportunity: The bioanalytical services market is fragmented with significant opportunities to acquire additional providers to further strengthen BioAgilytix’s capabilities and expand its global presence. Through its strong pipeline of potential add-on targets, BioAgilytix is well positioned to build on its strong M&A track record over the past five years.
  • Exceptional track record of growth: BioAgilytix has significantly outperformed the market, driven by its strong customer advocacy, unique track record, and strategic positioning as a leading independent provider of bioanalytical services for large molecule therapies.
  • Strong management team: BioAgilytix has an industry-leading management team, led by Jim Datin, President and CEO of BioAgilytix since 2013, that has been instrumental in building the Company into a best-in-class provider of bioanalytical services.

This transaction builds on Cinven’s successful investments in Medpace, a global CRO; Clario (formed from the combination of Bioclinica and ERT), a leading data and technology provider for clinical trials; and Synlab, Europe’s leading provider of laboratory diagnostic services. In addition, Cinven has invested in Envirotainer, a global provider of cold chain logistics to pharmaceutical and biotech clients to transport large molecule and cell and gene products globally; and LGC, a leading global life science tools company active in the standards and genomic spaces.

Matthew Norton, Partner at Cinven, said:

As part of Cinven’s thematic-based approach to investing, and as seen with its current and former portfolio companies, Cinven has long followed the ongoing shift in R&D, towards more innovative, complex large molecule drugs and cell and gene therapies. This has been driven by exciting scientific advancements which have and should continue to result in substantial growth in these areas.

“BioAgilytix was identified as extremely well placed to benefit from these trends given the Company’s focus on the fastest growing large molecule and advanced modality therapies and its reputation for being able to solve its customers’ most complex bioanalytical problems.

“We are excited to partner with Jim and his management and scientific leadership teams, to invest behind the significant additional growth prospects ahead for BioAgilytix.”

Phil Cathcart, Principal at Cinven, added:

“BioAgilytix has unparalleled expertise and capabilities which has enabled it to attract the best talent in the industry, further reinforcing its leadership position in a rapidly growing market. We look forward to working with the BioAgilytix team to continue their highly successful growth trajectory in the years to come.”

 Jim Datin, President and CEO of BioAgilytix, commented:

“BioAgilytix is in business to help its customers – some of the world’s largest and most advanced pharma and biotech companies – to successfully navigate the inherent complexities of large molecule bioanalysis. Our mission is to provide quality, dependable bioanalytical support and scientific expertise to the pharmaceutical and biotech industries to more effectively bring their products to market to improve patient outcomes.

“Cinven understands and shares our ambitions for BioAgilytix and, most importantly, is committed to achieving our vision of accelerating the approval of life-changing medicines.”

The transaction is subject to customary anti-trust and regulatory approvals.