OrbiMed in debut exit as TAKE Solutions inks pact to buy Ecron Acunova

Chennai-based TAKE Solutions Ltd, a business technology company focused on life sciences and supply chain management, has inked an agreement to buy Bengaluru-based life sciences services company Manipal Acunova Ltd which operates under the Ecron Acunova label, it said on Wednesday.

The firm did not disclose the deal value but separate media reports citing company executives said it is paying Rs 115 crore for the acquisition.

Ecron Acunova delivers pharmaceutical research services to clients across Southeast Asia, Central and Nordic Europe and North America. Along with catering to big pharma clients, it delivers specialised services to small and mid-size biotech and pharma companies in the areas of pharmacovigilance, regulatory affairs, strategic consulting, clinical data management, and biostatistics and medical writing.

It provides services for Phase I-IV clinical research, including clinical trial management, clinical data management, PK/PD services and central lab with its research centres in Europe and India.

Its chairman DA Prasanna, who owns majority stake in the firm along with other high net-worth investors, had told VCCircle last year the firm is looking to raise a fresh round of PE funding and was looking to pursue acquisitions overseas, especially in North Asia.

In 2009, the company got an investment of $6.5 million from healthcare-focused global private equity firm OrbiMed. At present, the PE fund owns a minority stake in the company and would get an exit through this deal.

A significant minority stake in the company is also owned by Manipal Group.

In 2007, when the company was still known as Manipal Acunova, it acquired Germany-based Ecron GmbH after which it was rebranded as Ecron Acunova. In 2011, the company acquired 75 per cent stake in aCROnordic, the oldest Scandinavian CRO, for around Rs 15 crore.

For TAKE Solutions, this is the first acquisition in almost five years. The company that clocked revenues of Rs 241.7 crore with net profit of Rs 25 crore in the second quarter ended September 30, 2015, had acquired UK-based life sciences consulting firm WCI Consulting Group in January 2011.

Meanwhile, for OrbiMed, this would mark the first full exit from an Indian portfolio company. Ecron Acunova was the debut investment for OrbiMed in India. It had last year part-exited its investment in Claris Lifesciences.

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