Avista Capital Partners Agrees to Acquire BioReliance Corporation for Approximately $210 Million
NEW YORK, Feb. 13 — Avista Capital Partners, a leading private equity firm, announced today it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire BioReliance Corporation, a business unit of Invitrogen Corporation (Nasdaq: IVGN – News) for approximately $210 million. BioReliance is a leading contract service organization providing biological safety testing, toxicology, viral manufacturing, and laboratory animal diagnostic services to the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical industries globally.
The deal is expected to close during the second quarter of 2007.
Founded in 1947 as Microbiological Associates, Rockville, Maryland based BioReliance is a specialist provider of contract biologics safety testing, GMP manufacturing, and pre-clinical testing services, and focuses on the rapidly growing biologics sector of the pharmaceutical industry. The company provides cost-effective services to over 600 clients annually, including most of the largest pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies in the world. BioReliance’s services and broad experience provide all of its clients with a cost effective alternative to the fixed costs associated with internal development and manufacture.
David Burgstahler, a partner at Avista Capital Partners, said, “We are delighted to add BioReliance to our healthcare portfolio. BioReliance has an excellent track record as a premier service provider and is a recognized leader in each of its service areas. With its strong scientific team and emphasis on customer service and functional excellence, we believe BioReliance is poised for continued success in today’s biopharmaceutical environment, which is seeing increased regulatory scrutiny and a shift toward outsourcing non-core activities.”
“For the last 60 years, BioReliance has pioneered many of the scientific advancements in the contract research organization industry and has built a solid reputation for strong regulatory expertise and innovative testing solutions,” added Larry Pickering, a healthcare Industry Partner at Avista Capital Partners. “As such, we believe BioReliance is in a great position to capitalize on favorable industry trends within the biopharmaceutical sector.”
Charles Harwood will serve as Chairman of the BioReliance Board of Directors. Mr. Harwood was previously President and CEO of Focus Diagnostics and is well known to the Avista Capital Partners team. Mr. Harwood stated, “We are enthusiastic about BioReliance’s future growth prospects and look forward to working with Tim Derrington, General Manager of BioReliance, and the rest of his management and scientific team. We will be appointing Tim the President and CEO of the new stand-alone BioReliance company.”
“This is an exciting time for BioReliance, and we are thrilled to be partnering with Avista Capital Partners as we develop a strategy for investing in new service initiatives to capitalize on the growth of the biotech service sector,” said Mr. Derrington. “Our forthcoming web-based iNet system, designed for electronic orders and results reporting, along with our commitment to developing rapid testing methods, will further enhance the customer experience and maintain our industry-leading market positions.”
BioReliance will be Avista’s third investment in the healthcare industry. In 2006, Avista announced healthcare investments in Nycomed (http://www.nycomed.com) and MedServe (http://www.medserveinc.com). While at DLJ Merchant Banking Partners, the Avista partners were involved in numerous healthcare transactions including Accellant, Charles River Laboratories, Focus Diagnostics, KCI, Prometheus Labs, and Warner Chilcott.
Weil, Gotshal & Manges served as legal counsel for Avista Capital Partners and financing will be provided by UBS Securities.