Horizon Discovery has agreed to divest its animal research models business unit to Envigo.

According to the company, the agreement, which forms part of its strategy to refocus on high growth areas within its core market, is expected to be completed within 30-45 days, subject to customary closing conditions.

As part of the agreement, Horizon’s research models business unit, which provides genetically engineered models from its premises in Boyertown, Pennsylvania and St Louis, Missouri, USA, will be transferred to Envigo ownership, including assets and employees.

The business unit uses Horizon’s gene editing expertise to produce customised models with clinically relevant gene deletions, insertions and other modifications, which are then used as pre-clinical models for human genetic disease during drug discovery and development.

The two companies have announced the intention to collaborate to ensure continuity and enable all customers to access CRISPR-edited research models for screening and other applications.

Terry Pizzie, the firm's chief executive, said Horizon is “pleased to announce this transaction with a strong commercial partner, Envigo, which will provide an opportunity for the research models business to flourish within a larger, market-leading company and also deliver continuity for its many customer relationships.”

He continued to say, “Envigo will bring a dedicated sales channel to the organisation to super-charge the positive work already done by the Horizon sales team over the last months. Horizon will collaborate with Envigo to provide access to our experience and expertise in generating CRISPR-edited models. This transaction is therefore beneficial for all parties and fully in-line with our Investing for Growth strategy to focus on establishing leadership positions in our key markets.”

Envigo, which is headquartered in the US, has more than 1,200 employees in more than 20 locations across North America and Europe.