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Private equity firm Advent International on Monday said it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire a majority stake in bulk drugs manufacturer ZCL Chemicals Ltd.

With this transaction, Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia will exit ZCL, said Advent in a statement without revealing financial details.

VCCircle reported last year that ZCL had initiated talks to provide an exit to Morgan Stanley. Earlier this year, VCCircle reported that the bulk drugs maker had attracted bids from four groups including Advent. 

The transaction was expected at a valuation of Rs 1,500-2,000 crore ($205-272 million).

ZCL was founded in 1991 by the Parikh family and was initially known as Zandu Chemicals. It focuses on therapeutic areas of central nervous system, anti-retroviral and controlled substances. The firm has a manufacturing facility and an R&D centre in Gujarat.

This is Advent's second bet in the API space in India and its third investment in the pharmaceuticals segment.

In the first API bet in July last year, Advent agreed to acquire a controlling stake in RA Chem Pharma Ltd from Bengaluru-based Micro Labs Ltd.

Besides Advent and a PAG-led consortium, the Carlyle Group is also working towards building an API platform. The global PE firm said last year it is acquiring a majority stake in SeQuent Scientific Ltd, which makes animal healthcare APIs.

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