Chinese company acquires Oklahoma City firm Cytovance Biologics
By Paul Monies
Copyright © 2015 The Oklahoma Publishing Co.
Cytovance Biologics Inc., an Oklahoma City-based pharmaceutical contract manufacturer, will be acquired by a unit of a Chinese company in a $206 million deal, the companies announced Monday.
Hepalink USA, a subsidiary of Shenzhen Hepalink Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., said the acquisition will allow it to accelerate Cytovance’s expansion plans.
“We are excited about this transaction and what it means for Cytovance,” Darren Head, president and CEO of Cytovance, said in a statement. “This will expand our ability to develop and grow both our domestic and international businesses and to secure our current expansion plans in our Oklahoma City facilities. We do not anticipate any changes in how we currently do business. We will become part of a very successful company that shares our commitment to safety and quality.”
Cytovance has 178 employees, all in Oklahoma City. The company’s management team will stay in place after the transaction closes.
“We welcome and are honored to have Hepalink as the new owner of Cytovance,” said Dr. William Canfield, co-chair and founder of Cytovance. “They will be thrilled, as I have been, to work with Cytovance’s extraordinarily talented and capable team of professionals who have made a practice of exceeding customer expectations while building one of the world’s best companies in the biopharmaceutical contract manufacturing market.”
Cytovance’s product lines are biologics, therapeutic proteins and antibodies made from either mammal cells or cells from bacteria. The company’s expansion plans include the addition of 5,000-liter and 10,000-liter mammalian reactors, which are used to grow proteins from mammal cells. It also expects to add 1,000-liter and 5,000-liter microbial fermentors, which are used to grow proteins from bacteria.
Cytovance products are used by researchers for clinical trials to help find better vaccines and cures for diseases such as cancer, sickle cell anemia, asthma and gout.
Hepalink said the addition of Cytovance will strengthen its contract development and manufacturing organization portfolio, which also includes Wisconsin-based Scientific Protein Laboratories LLC.
“Hepalink will accelerate the realization of its strategy in the global macromolecule biopharmaceutical space,” Li Li, Hepalink’s chairman and CEO, said in a statement. “Cytovance will have the resources to expand its manufacturing capabilities, enhancing its ability in late-stage clinical drug production and commercial business. We are very impressed with Cytovance’s top-tier leadership team and will entrust this team to lead the future growth of the company.”
Under the terms of the deal, Hepalink will acquire Cytovance for $205.68 million in cash, plus certain contingent payments. The transaction is expected to close in October following regulatory approval.