BioAgilytix Continues To Grow With Planned Acquisition of 360biolabs
The rapid expansion continues.
Durham-based global contract research lab BioAgilytix, one of North Carolina’s fastest-growing life sciences businesses, has announced plans to buy Australia’s 360biolabs. Both are contract research organizations (CROs) that provide analytical testing for other companies’ drug candidates.
The two companies have signed a definitive agreement and the deal is expected to close in the third quarter of this year, if approved by the Australian Foreign Investment Review Board. It will combine BioAgilytix’s large-molecule drug development expertise with 360biolabs’ small-molecule capabilities.
Small-molecule drugs are chemically derived and make up the bulk of medicines currently available. Large-molecule medicines, or biologics, are extracted from living organisms and are a rapidly growing segment of the market.
“This planned acquisition is part of our strategic growth strategy to expand our capacity, expertise and agility to serve customers across all geographies and we look forward to welcoming the 360biolabs team and integrating the business,” said BioAgilytix President and CEO Jim Datin. “Joining forces makes sense for our two organizations, but most importantly for our combined clients and the patients they serve. Together, we will not only create significant scientific synergies but also generate new innovations and help bring future life-changing therapeutics to patients more rapidly around the globe.”
Privately held BioAgilytix was founded in 2008 by biochemist and serial entrepreneur Afshin Safavi, Ph.D. and acquired in 2018 by two private equity firms, Belgium-based Cobepa and London-based GHO Capital. It has grown rapidly from an initial three employees to its current workforce of about 650 that support pharmaceutical and biotech partners at all stages of drug development. Of those, 450 are in North Carolina.
BioAgilytix operates labs in Research Triangle Park, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Hamburg, Germany. The company’s global headquarters are in Durham, where it is committed by the end of 2027 to make more than $61 million in expansion investments.
Melbourne, Victoria-based 360biolabs, billed as the most comprehensive contract research organization in the Australia and New Zealand region, opened its doors in 2015. It currently has about 70 employees and specializes in virology and immunology. 360biolabs was cofounded by The Burnet Institute, a global medical research and public health organization that remains its majority stakeholder.
Burnet Institute Director and CEO Professor Brendan Crabb said of the acquisition, “It is the right time, with the growing need for high-quality clinical trial support, for a company of the scale, capability and reputation of 360biolabs to join with BioAgilytix and expand their capacity to service their customers and facilitate high-quality translational medical research.”
“From the launch of 360biolabs in 2015,” added Angela Luttick, the company’s cofounder and executive vice president for business development, “our strategic vision was to build a global specialty laboratory, providing support to enable future medicines for human health.”