Aptuit Buys GSK’s Medicines Research Center in Italy

Aptuit has bought GlaxoSmithKline’s Medicines Research Center in Verona, Italy. The arrangement is effective July 1. Financial terms were not disclosed. Aptuit, a pharmaceutical services company, is a portfolio company of Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe. GSK is a research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare company.


GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Aptuit, Inc. announced today that they have finalized an agreement for Aptuit to acquire operations at GSK’s Medicines Research Centre in Verona, Italy. The arrangement, which is effective as of July 1, 2010, provides for ongoing employment of the staff at the centre and for Aptuit to supply GSK with R&D services from the facilities. Financial terms have not been disclosed.

Under the agreement, Aptuit will gain the scientific expertise and knowledge at the research centre through the transfer of the facility’s approximately 500 staff from GSK to Aptuit. This will help maintain the life sciences research and talent pool in Italy. In addition to becoming an important member of GSK’s contract research organization network, acquisition of the operations will also allow Aptuit to provide integrated development services to its global customers.

“Aptuit was built to provide an integrated drug development capability and streamline the drug development process. This is a strategic acquisition of GSK’s research business in Verona that further strengthens scientific expertise and capabilities within Aptuit, extending our integrated discovery and development offerings,” said Tim Tyson, Chairman and CEO of Aptuit. “This partnership is an example of the developing new model of outsourced R&D collaborations. Verona staff are recognized industry-wide for their drug development expertise and will be an excellent addition to the Aptuit team.”

GSK announced in February its proposal to cease discovery research in select neurosciences areas such as pain and depression, which impacted research at the Italian facility.

Moncef Slaoui, Chairman of GSK Research and Development said: “I am pleased that both GSK and Aptuit have developed this innovative approach. It provides a modern option for drug discovery expertise to remain as part of the science research community in Italy and offers the opportunity to assure continuity of employment for the GSK staff at the site. This arrangement would not have been possible without the input of the Italian government and unions.”

The Verona Medicines Research Centre expands Aptuit’s global footprint to 19 locations – a global network of operations that provides a full suite of development services. The agreement also enhances Aptuit’s ability to serve customers working to develop compounds for high-value and strategically important therapeutic areas such as neurosciences discovery and development, as well as cardiovascular and infectious diseases.

Aptuit will combine its existing capabilities with the Verona Medicines Research Centre’s expertise in drug discovery, lead optimization, active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) development and manufacturing, and pre-clinical and clinical drug development. This will create a unique, industry-leading drug development capability.