Another Cambridge cluster biotech firm is snapped up by Americans

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20/03/2017

A Newmarket life sciences supplier has been purchased by an American firm.

Molecular Dimensions has been sold by owner Tony Savill to Anatrace, which operates in a similar field. Adding Molecular Dimensions to the Anatrace family establishes a European presence for the group and further solidifies its position in the structural biology arena, the American firm says.

Founded in 1998, Molecular Dimensions is a leading supplier of modern screens, reagents, other consumables and instrumentation for structural biology research. For many years the company has provided specialist products for crystallographers and grown through alliances with leading scientists aimed at developing and commercializing innovative ideas.

The company serves clients operating in structural biology research across Europe, the Americas and Asia in universities, research institutes, and blue-chip corporates focused on drug discovery.

Savill has owned the firm since 2010, when he completed a management buy-out, and has now decided to sell to Anatrace, which is a portfolio company of Los Angeles-based private equity firm StoneCalibre.

“As I evaluated a variety of potential strategic alternatives for Molecular Dimensions, it quickly became evident that partnering with Anatrace and StoneCalibre was the ideal path forward,” he said.

“Their industry expertise, growth-oriented mind-set and our strategic fit with Anatrace convinced me that Molecular Dimensions would continue to thrive under their leadership for years to come.”

PEM Corporate Finance provided advice on the deal, having previously represented Savill for the management buy-out. Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

Lake Falconer, corporate finance partner at PEM, said: “We are delighted to have advised Tony on the original MBO of Molecular Dimensions in 2010, through its subsequent development, and now the sale to Anatrace. The two businesses look an excellent strategic fit together. It’s a great example of how we can help our client achieve their plans at all stages.”

“Most of us may understand that drug discovery is a long and arduous multi-year process, but what is less known is that many of the specific drug targets are proteins,” said said Ben Travis, CEO of Anatrace.

“With the addition of Molecular Dimensions we will be able to offer a more complete portfolio of tools that aid and support drug discovery, disease prevention and cure.

“We are excited to continue to invest in technologies that remain at the cutting edge of this evolving industry.”


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