Catalent to plug bioavailability tech gap with Pharmatek Laboratories buy

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Source Google images
Source Google images

Related tags Active ingredient

Catalent has announced its intention to buy Pharmatek Laboratories to boost its drug bioavailability offering.

Pharmatek provides development and analytical services at its facility in San Diego. The site also produces​ higly potent active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and cytotoxics.

The firm employs 200 people all of whom will be hired by Catalent according to a spokesman.

He added that the takeover will expand Catalent's bioavailability enhancement offering. 

The deal - which is expected to close in the next few weeks - is in keeping with the strategy the firm outlined in January​.


Catalent has been building in the bioavailability enhancement sector over the past few years.

In 2012​, for example, it teamed up with BASF to provide solubility or permeability services for drug firms working with BCS Class II and IV substances.

That agreement saw Catalent offer its OptiMelt hot melt extrusion tech, as well as its Softgel platform. BASF contributed excipients and its Soluplus platform.

Post IPO deals

The Pharmatek acquisition comes two weeks after Catalent reported a 6% increase in revenue and a 13% hike in income from continuing operations for the fourth quarter of its fiscal year, ended June 30.

According to the report, Catalent’s softgel technologies and drug delivery solutions businesses both saw revenue and earnings growth in the period.

In contrast, the CMO's clinical supply services unit saw earning fall 7% despite a 4% increase in revenue.

It also comes days after certain unnamed Catalent stockholders decided to sell 19 million shares in the CMO.

Since going public in 2014 Catalent has made a number of acquisitions, which is a continuation of the growth strategy that saw it complete nearly a dozen bolt-on takeovers​ (other examples here​, here and here) while owned by the Blackstone Group.

Pharmatek Laboratories joins Pharmapak​, Micron Technologies​ and Redwood Bioscience​ on Catalent’s list of post IPO acquisitions. 

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