INC Research, which is backed by Avista Capital Partners and Ontario Teachers’ Pension, has agreed to buy Kendle International in a deal valued at about $232 million. JP Morgan Securities advised Kendle while Morgan Stanley served as financial advisor to INC Research.
INC Research, LLC, a therapeutically focused global contract research organization (CRO) privately held by Avista Capital Partners and Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, and Kendle International Inc. (NASDAQ: KNDL), today jointly announced a definitive merger agreement under which INC Research will acquire Kendle in an all-cash transaction with a total equity value of approximately $232 million. Kendle is a leading global CRO with extensive expertise in Phase I-IV clinical development and more than 3,000 associates in 31 countries worldwide.
Under the terms of the agreement, INC Research will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Kendle for $15.25 per share in cash, representing a 60.5 percent premium over Kendle’s closing share price on May 4, 2011. This represents a premium of 51.3 percent over the 30-trading day average of Kendle’s closing price. The Board of Directors of Kendle unanimously approved the transaction, which is expected to close in the third quarter subject to approval by Kendle’s shareholders as well as satisfaction of customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.
“Joining forces with INC Research is the right decision for our customers and shareholders. Combining our highly complementary assets will provide the scale and scope for the combined company to deliver outstanding global teams, therapeutic expertise and operational excellence for clinical trials of all sizes,” said Kendle President and CEO, Stephen Cutler, PhD. “Because both companies are known for conducting high-quality clinical work and share a common culture based on excellent service delivery, we will be able to maintain a customer-centric focus on each individual project.”
“The combination of INC Research and Kendle will enable us to deliver broader capabilities and reach a critical mass for the emerging drug development outsourcing and alliance partnership models,” said James Ogle, CEO of INC Research. “Together, we bring complementary strengths and expand the breadth and depth of services and expertise that are most valuable to our customers.”
The combination of INC Research and Kendle strengthens both businesses by creating a global CRO with significant therapeutic capability and geographic diversity. The combined company will rank among the top-tier CROs based on size and scale, and will be well positioned to handle large-scale global trials.
As a result of the proposed merger transaction, Kendle’s earnings release and conference call/webcast scheduled for Thursday, May 5, at 8 a.m. Eastern Time has been cancelled. In addition, Kendle’s Annual Meeting of Shareholders has been postponed from May 19, 2011, with a new date to be determined by Kendle’s Board of Directors.
In connection with the transaction, J.P. Morgan Securities LLC acted as Kendle’s financial advisor and Keating, Muething & Klekamp PLL acted as its legal advisor. Morgan Stanley & Co. Inc. acted as financial advisor and Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP acted as the legal advisor to INC Research.
Kendle International Inc. (NASDAQ: KNDL) is a leading global clinical research organization providing the full range of early- to late-stage clinical development services for the world’s biopharmaceutical industry. Our focus is on innovative solutions that reduce cycle times for our customers and accelerate the delivery of life-enhancing products to market for the benefit of patients worldwide. As one of the world’s largest global providers of Phase I-IV services, we offer experience spanning more than 100 countries, along with industry-leading patient access and retention capabilities and broad therapeutic expertise, to meet our customers’ clinical development challenges. For more information, please visit www.kendle.com.
About INC Research, LLC
INC Research is a therapeutically focused contract research organization with a high performance reputation for conducting global clinical development programs of the highest integrity. Pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies look to INC Research for a complete range of customized Phase I through Phase IV programs in therapeutic areas of specialty, and in innovative pediatric and women’s health trials. The company’s Trusted Process® methodology and therapeutic foresight leads customers to more confident, better-informed drug and device development decisions. INC Research is headquartered in Raleigh, NC. For more information please visit www.incresearch.com or follow us at @inc_research.
About Avista Capital Partners
Avista Capital Partners is a leading private equity firm managing approximately $4 billion of committed capital with offices in New York, Houston, and London. Founded in 2005, Avista’s strategy is to make controlling or influential minority investments in growth-oriented energy, healthcare, media, industrial and consumer businesses. Through its team of seasoned investment professionals and industry experts, Avista seeks to partner with exceptional management teams to invest in and add value to well-positioned businesses. For more information visit www.avistacap.com.
About Teachers’ Private Capital
Teachers’ Private Capital is one of the world’s largest private equity investors. It is the private investment department of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan. With $107.5 billion in assets as of December 31, 2010, the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan is the largest single-profession pension plan in Canada. It is an independent corporation responsible for investing the fund and administering the pensions of Ontario’s 295,000 active and retired teachers. For more information visit www.otpp.com.