Thursday, September 21, 2023

Linklaters, CMS Spain advise on the acquisition of ADL Biopharma by Wacker Group

Linklaters has advised sellers Kartesia on the sale of ADL Biopharma to Wacker Group, which was advised by CMS Albiñana & Suárez de Lezo. According to TTR, this was the deal of the month (May) in the Spanish market


Kartesia, the European specialist provider of capital solutions for small and mid-sized companies, today announces that it has sold the Spanish bioingredients company ADL Biopharma (“ADL” or “the Company”) to Wacker Chemie AG, a multinational chemical group. The company will be integrated into WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS, the biotechnology division of Wacker Chemie.

This way, WACKER chemical group headquartered in Munich has acquired 100 percent of the shares of contract manufacturing company (CMO) ADL BioPharma. The shares were purchased from Kartesia, a financial investor with whom WACKER signed a corresponding agreement finalizing the transaction last week. Following WACKER’s purchase of fermentation assets in the northern Spanish city of León in 2016, the chemical group now owns the entire site. The acquisition of the company, employing a staff of roughly 300, expands WACKER’s fermentation capacities by approximately 2,000 cubic meters (gross volume) and adds additional capacities for recovery and purification processes. WACKER will continue and grow existing customer relationships maintained by ADL BioPharma in its capacity as CMO for fermentation-based products for the food, pharmaceutical and consumer goods industries. The purchase price for the acquisition exceeds €100 million.

“Acquiring ADL BioPharma is an important step in the continued growth of our biotechnology business, with which we expect to generate one billion euros in sales in 2030,” says WACKER’s CEO Christian Hartel, explaining the reasons for the investment. “Development at ADL BioPharma has been very good in recent years, and their sales have grown considerably. The additional fermentation capacities will provide a foundation for growth in the field of sustainably produced dietary ingredients. WACKER’s technological expertise combined with the capacities of ADL BioPharma will make us a much stronger player on this growth market.”

WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS, the life science business of the WACKER Group, has operated fermentation plants at the León site for the past seven years. In 2016, WACKER acquired from ADL BioPharma production assets with a fermentation capacity of 800 cubic meters (gross volume). WACKER has since produced fermentation-based cystine in León, offering its services as a contract manufacturing organization. Following this acquisition, the Munich-based chemical group upgraded the existing facilities and invested in additional production equipment. The company also created some 60 new jobs at the site, quadrupling the number of employees.

The acquisition of ADL BioPharma now makes WACKER owner of the entire plant, with total fermentation capacities of just under 3,000 cubic meters (gross volume). Susanne Leonhartsberger, head of the WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS business division, outlines the plans that WACKER has for the site: “ADL BioPharma’s CMO business is a very good fit for our portfolio. The company maintains extensive, extraordinarily important customer relationships that we will continue to pursue and expand still further. We will integrate these activities into WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS, for example through the production of sustainable ingredients for the foods and nutritional supplements industries. This is an area where we foresee opportunities for growth at the León site in the coming years. We are happy to welcome our new colleagues into the company and plan to work with them on the continuous expansion of our business.”

Linklaters advised Kartesia with a Spain office team formed by partners Carmen Burgos and Francisco Sáinz-Trápaga Dueñas, managing associates Mario García García and Ricardo Lecaro Manrique and associate Lucía Herrero García, and a Luxembourg office team led by partner Melinda Perera, and managing associate Laurent Benoit and associate Vanessa Rodrigues.

CMS Spain advised Wacker with a team led by partners Carlos Vérgez and Luis Miguel de Dios Martínez, counsels Elena Alcázar Cuartero, Juan Moreno, senior associate Aleksandra Czajka and lawyer Saphira Mouzayek.

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