Private equity firm Kohlberg has unveiled plans to buy Worldwide Clinical Trials, citing the CROs market reach and scientific knowledgebase.
The definitive agreement – which was announced this month – will see Kohlberg take on ownership of WCT from current backer TJC, which will retain and minority equity interest.
The deal, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2023, subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions, was prompted by WCT’s market potential according to Chris Anderson, Partner at Kohlberg.
Upon the deal closing, Matt Jennings, operating partner of Kohlberg, will become Chairman of Worldwide’s Board of Directors.
“The scientific heritage runs deep at Worldwide – it’s a true competitive advantage and a key component of the breadth of services the CRO offers to its customers through its accessible team of clinicians, scientists, and researchers.
“Worldwide’s business aligns with the themes we have successfully invested behind in our Pharmaceutical & Medical Products & Services industry practice, and we look forward to supporting Peter and the Worldwide team with our capital base and resources to help achieve their growth goals.”
This view was echoed by TJC Partner, Dave Butler, who said “There has been one constant since our initial investment in the Worldwide team – that the market needed a CRO who was a true drug development partner driven by medicine and science and manifested in deep therapeutic expertise.
“That culture has attracted the best talent in the industry, which is why we believe Worldwide wins, and will continue to win. We are proud to have been partnered with such an exceptional team and excited to support the company’s next chapter of success through our continued investment.”
News of the acquisition comes just a few months after WCT expanded its European cancer drug study network in deals with Spain’s Next Oncology – which has sites in Madrid and Barcelona - and research site organization Pratia Research Platform, which has facilities in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland Spain, and Ukraine.