Catalent Pharma Solutions, whose broad range of services encompasses pharmaceutical development, drug delivery technologies and supply-chain capabilities such as manufacturing and packaging, says it is poised to become the number two clinical-trial supply solutions provider worldwide when it acquires the Clinical Trial Supplies business of Aptuit LLC.

Under the agreement announced between Catalent and Aptuit, a global pharmaceutical services company also based in the US, Catalent will pay US$410 million in cash on a debt-free basis for the Clinical Trial Supplies business, which Aptuit is selling off to concentrate on its integrated discovery to mid-phase development activities.

Aptuit made headlines last summer when it took on the operations of GlaxoSmithKline’s Medicines Research Centre in Verona, Italy, which had been sidelined by GSK’s reduced commitment to discovery in the neurosciences.

Big expansion

The acquisition will substantially expand Catalent’s Development & Clinical Services business, transforming it into the number two provider of clinical supply solutions globally, while adding significant development and clinical manufacturing expertise and capacity, the companies noted. 

The transaction will also reinforce Catalent’s global leadership in development solutions and advanced delivery technologies for drugs and biologics, added John Chiminski, the company’s president and chief executive officer (CEO).

Catalent’s Development & Clinical Services business offers clinical supply services, analytical chemistry, respiratory product development, regulatory consulting and cell-line development for biologics.

Recently the company has made substantial investments to extend the capabilities and capacity of these operations, it said.

Rump Aptuit

Aptuit’s remaining business maintains discovery, development and manufacturing facilities in the United States, Europe and Asia.

The company claims the most complete set of integrated early-development capabilities in the industry, ranging from discovery, early development, solid-state chemistry, sterile-fill parenterals and high-potency active pharmaceutical ingredients through to Class V and formulation development. 

“This agreement puts Aptuit in a better position to focus on the scientific excellence that our customers want,” commented chairman and CEO Timothy Tyson.

“Focusing on our expertise in discovery and development services leverages our leadership position, and allows us to concentrate on delivering high-growth, high-value scientific services from discovery to mid-phase development.”

The acquisition is subject to the usual closing conditions and should be completed by the end of the calendar year.