Partners Group Agrees to Buy BC’s Drugmaker Pharmathen

Partners Group Holding AG has agreed to acquire Pharmathen SA from BC Partners in a deal valuing the European generic drugmaker at around 1.6 billion euros ($1.9 billion).

BC Partners announced the deal in a statement Monday that confirmed an earlier Bloomberg News report. Partners Group preempted other private equity and strategic bidders to win the planned auction of the drugmaker, people familiar said.

The sale adds to $60 billion of deals targeting European health-care companies this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That’s up 286% on the same period in 2020, with private equity firms continuing to target the sector.

Founded in 1969 in Athens, Pharmathen develops and manufactures generic drugs that can be administered via tablets, drops and injection. Last year, the company had more than 30 products being lined up for launch, with a focus on the lucrative U.S. market, according to a company video. BC Partners acquired Pharmathen from its founding family for 475 million euros in 2015.

“During our ownership, we invested over 250 million euros into R&D and new FDA-approved production facilities, nearly doubled the number of employees and executed some truly transformational projects,” Nikos Stathopoulos, managing partner and executive committee member at BC Partners, said in the statement.

BC Partners is selling the business for around 20 times earnings, double the multiple it paid in 2015, the people said. BC Partners invested in the business during a year of heightened financial market volatility for Greece. It’s been one of the most lucrative investments from BC’s 9th buyout fund, with returns of four times the money invested.

In June, BC Partners also announced a new fund of more than 1 billion euros to extend its investment in Springer Nature.

Partners Group on Saturday confirmed that it had also agreed to buy a 75% stake in Italian internet provider Eolo. Partners Group’s offer valued Eolo at about 1.2 billion euros including debt, said people familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified because discussions are private.

BC Partners was advised by Jefferies Financial Group Inc. on the Pharmathen sale.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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