Avista Capital and Nordic Capital to buy Swiss generic drugmaker Acino for $439 mn

acinoPrivate equity firms Avista Capital and Nordic Capital yesterday agreed to buy Swiss generic drugmaker Acino Holding AG for about 398 million Swiss francs ($439 million).

Under the deal, Avista and Nordic Capital will pay 115 francs ($127.60) a share in cash, a premium of 33 per cent to Acino's Tuesday closing price of 86.50 francs a share.

Acino's board have unanimously approved the offer, which is subject to a minimum acceptance by holders of two-thirds (66.67 per cent) of Acino's shares, and customary regulatory approvals.

SIX Swiss Exchange-listed Acino develops, manufactures and markets innovative pharmaceuticals in novel drug delivery forms.

In recent years, Acino has developed its business from a Central European pharmaceutical supplier into a diversified pharmaceutical company with a differentiated portfolio of products and services, distinct customer groups, and worldwide operations.

The company's growth strategy is centered around its core competence in advanced drug delivery, and its expanding presence in the emerging markets.

Acino leads in advanced drug delivery technologies with a focus on modified release oral forms, oral dispersible forms, transdermal systems and extended release parenterals, for which it also holds patents.

The Aesch, Swizerland-based company also supplies finished in-house developed products and/or provides customised one-stop solutions from product development and registration to contract manufacturing, packaging and logistics.

It sells its drugs to 80 countries in the Middle East, Africa, Latin America and Asia, has 788 employees and generated revenues of €143 million in the first half-year 2013.

Avista and Nordic Capital believe that significant opportunities exist to further support the development of Acino under private ownership. The investors are prepared to commit substantial capital as well as utilise their experienced global healthcare network to further expand upon Acino's growth strategy.

"Avista and Nordic Capital are well-suited partners for Acino. They have proven 'buy and build' capabilities and the financial resources that will significantly enhance Acino's growth opportunities," said Acino's chairman Luzi von Bidder.