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UK pharma firm strikes £32.5m MBO

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Quantum Specials was established in 2004  by four former managers of the Unichemowned Eldon Laboratories and is forecasting sales of £22m this year. The company employs more than 100 people.

Managing director Ian Edge says: “After nearly five years of rapid growth, this deal comes at a crucial time in our development and will bring on board the expertise and financial backing we need to take the business forward.

“The buyout will help us further enhance our customer service levels, something which has been the bedrock of our success. It also provides us with a strategic investor with whom we can work closely to explore new routes to market.

Quantum Specials has developed a service that enables a 24-hour turnaround from the initial pharmacist’s order through to manufacture and eventual delivery to the patient. It currently has more than 12,000 formulas on its database and around 20 more are added to the range each week.

The medicines are manufactured at the firm’s 66,000 sq ft site, which includes state-of-the-art clean room facilities, and where in excess of 600 orders per day are processed.

LDC’s investment of £14m is made up of loans and shares and the house’s John Swarbrick will take a seat on the company’s board. A £18.5m package of senior debt and working capital facilities has been provided by Yorkshire Bank Corporate and Structured Finance. The management team, led by Edge, has also invested shares in the company

The buyout provides an exit for corporate shareholder Phoenix Medical Supplies and a number of the founding shareholders.

LDC says it is looking to invest £250million of equity this year. In 2008, it invested £265million invested in 14 transactions.

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