Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Pharmaceutical Firm Is Sold in PS230m Deal

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Pharmaceutical Firm Is Sold in PS230m Deal

Article excerpt

Byline: ACQUISITIONS ROBERT GIBSON robert.gibson@ncjmedia.co.uk

AN INTERNATIONAL pharmaceutical firm based in the North East has been sold in a PS230m deal.

Aesica Pharmaceuticals Ltd, which is headquartered in Newcastle and has a base in Cramlington, Northumberland, will be purchased by Consort Medical plc in November, conditional on the approval of shareholders. As Aesica has operations in Germany, the deal will also require the go-ahead from the German competition authorities.

Should approval be granted, Silverfleet Capital, which owns 65% of the company, will sell its stake in the business. Apart from that, operations will continue as normal for the firm, which currently employs total of 1,300 people, 50 of whom are based at its headquarters, while 165 work at its factory in Cramlington. "This transaction will create a much larger company, with over 2,000 employees, and we hope our employees will have greater opportunities to develop their careers," an Aesica spokesman said.

Aesica, which generated adjusted EBITDA of PS20m on revenues of PS179m last year, is one of Europe's leading pharmaceutical contract development and manufacturing organisations (CDMOs), providing services to the global pharmaceutical industry.

Established in 2004, when founding chief executive Dr Robert Hardy led a management buyout of BASF's production facility in Cramlington, it has since grown both organically and through acquisitions while developing key strategic relationships with major global blue-chip pharmaceutical companies.

The business - which has six development and manufacturing sites in the UK, Germany and Italy - began life with first-year sales of PS25m, a figure it has grown to nearly PS200m, while now exporting to 30 countries.

The Hemel Hempstead-headquartered Consort Medical plc, meanwhile, focuses on developing and manufacturing disposable medical devices for drug delivery, including inhaled, nasal and injectables products through its core operating division, Bespak. …

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