JLL To Make 3X Money with Sale of PharmaNet

With its sale of PharmaNet Development Group, JLL Partners stands to make 3x its original investment, a source says.

JLL, a New York PE firm, said today it was selling PharmaNet to inVentiv Health, which is owned by Thomas H. Lee Partners. Financial terms weren’t announced. The deal is expected to close on or about June 30.

BofA Merrill Lynch, Citi and Jefferies Finance are providing financing.

“We are very proud of the significant accomplishments that PharmaNet has achieved since the acquisition of the company in 2009,” said Ramsey Frank, a JLL partner, in a statement. “We have worked in close partnership with the company’s management team to drive operational efficiencies, outstanding new business momentum and the highest EBITDA levels in the Company’s history.”

In 2009, JLL acquired PharmaNet, a contract research organization, in a deal valued at $200 million (this includes $100 million for PharmaNet’s stock plus some debt).

JLL and other investors invested $165 million equity into PharmaNet. JLL’s portion was $140 million, the source says. Last year, PharmaNet shareholders received an $100 million dividend via a recap. With the sale, JLL is making 3x its original investment, the person said.

PharmaNet is inVentiv’s third deal this year. In January, the company agreed to buy i3, another contract research organization, as well as Campbell Alliance, a management consulting firm that serves the pharma and biotech industries. The Campbell acquisition closed in February, while i3 is slated to be completed by the end of June, an inVentiv spokesman said. Once all three acquisitions do close, inVentiv will have 13,000 employees, with 6,000 dedicated to clinical research globally.

Somerset, N.J.-based inVentiv provides clinical, consulting and commercial services to the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. Last year, Thomas H. Lee acquired inVentiv for $1.1 billion. inVentiv in 2009 had $928 million in net revenues.

JLL’s investment in PharmaNet came from its sixth fund that raised $800 million in 2010. JLL invests in a variety of industries with a focus on financial services, education, building products, and healthcare.

Michael Gerardi of Jefferies and Les Franks of UBS advised PharmaNet.