MDS Completes Sale of Discovery, Preclinical Portion of CRO
MDS completed its sale of the discovery and preclinical business of MDS Pharma Services, the company’s contract research organization (CRO). Under the terms of the deal, CRO Ricerca Biosciences of Concord, Ohio, acquired facilities in Bothell, Wash.; Lyon, France; and Taipei, Taiwan. Those facilities have 600 employees.
Ricerca is an early-stage CRO with capabilities in discovery and medicinal chemistry, API process chemistry, cGMP manufacturing and scale-up, and IND-enabling toxicology. MDS Pharma will add molecular profiling, pharmacology/DMPK and drug safety assessment to its list of services.
MDS is selling the remainder of its CRO business—the development and regulatory services consultancy as well as five early-stage facilities in Ireland, Nebraska, New Jersey, Arizona and Switzerland—to a new corporation primarily owned by private investment firms Bain Capital Ventures and SV Life Sciences. That sale is expected to close by the end of April. According to published reports, the total of both deals is approximately $45 million.
Neither deal includes the sale of MDS Pharma’s King of Prussia, Pa., executive office or its early clinical research and bioanalysis operations in Montreal, Quebec. The Pennsylvania office closed earlier this year, and the Montreal operations will be decommissioned over the next year with final close occurring in early 2011. Approximately 225 employees will be laid off as a result of the closures, while another 50 jobs will be eliminated from MDS Pharma Services’ other locations.