Synexus, one of the largest international investigative site networks, with 25 dedicated research centers in eight countries including the U.K., Germany, Poland and South Africa, has completed a management buyout with an eye toward expanding into the U.S., Asia and South America.
Lyceum Capital, which has owned Synexus since 2007, sold its ownership in the Manchester, U.K.-based company to the management team, led by Christophe Berthoux, M.D., CEO, with the backing of private equity investor Lloyds Development Group (LDC), part of Lloyds Banking Group.
Financial terms of the transaction were not announced, but several British newspapers, including the London Telegraph, suggested Synexus management and LDC paid Lyceum approximately $128 million.
Ged Gould, LDC’s director and co-head of its Manchester office, said the deal comes as the pharmaceutical industry and the rapidly expanding biotech sector are set for significant growth driven by aging populations and increased R&D.
"Christophe and the management team have done a fantastic job in building an international network in recent years, and we are eager to further support the business break into new markets as it targets opportunities in the U.S., South America and Asia," Gould said in a statement. “We believe this is a particularly good sector, as pharma continues to outsource their development activity.”
Under Berthoux, the company has expanded by acquiring smaller facilities, including its fourth site in South Africa, citing customer demand for more trial capacity in Africa.
Partnering with LDC “will give us the firepower to continue expanding our international network and to broaden the number of therapy areas we offer our pharma and CRO clients,” Berthoux said in a statement. “We are very grateful to Lyceum. They had the business knowledge and expertise that has helped us transform the company into a professional organization. The partnership with LDC marks the next phase in our ambitious growth plans.”
Last summer, Synexus was identified as a “Hyper growth Business” by GrowthAccelerator, the U.K. government-backed business growth advisory service.
Expansions since 2011 have included new site openings in the U.K., Bulgaria, Ukraine and Romania. Synexus said its 25 sites have increased trial access to more than 68 million potential patients. Synexus conducts predominantly phase III clinical trials in cardiovascular, metabolic (diabetes and obesity), musculoskeletal, respiratory and CNS (dementia and pain) indications.
For its fiscal year ending December 2014, Synexus reported revenue of $63 million and profits of $12 million, a 140% increase since 2011.