Bioscience company deal

Archangel and SIB exit CXR as Dundee firm sold

Niki McKenzieCXR Biosciences, the Dundee-based investigative and exploratory toxicology business, has been sold to Concept Life Sciences.

The deal, for an undisclosed sum, is likely to mean a positive return for shareholders who include Archangel Investors and Scottish Investment Bank.

All 33 staff at CXR, including chief executive Paul Smith, will remain and the business will retain its name and base in the city.

CXR was founded in 2001 as a spin-out from Dundee University with funding led by Archangels, the Edinburgh-based business angel syndicate which has been at the forefront of early stage investing in Scotland for more than two decades.

Concept Life Sciences is a UK-based, international scientific laboratory and consultancy business working in the life, food and environmental sciences.

This marks its fourth acquisition since it was formed in July 2014. Led by executive chairman Michael Fort and chief executive Alan Morgan the Concept Life Sciences Group currently has more than 600 staff in 11 core locations, with advanced plans for further expansion into continental Europe.

The business is supported by the European private equity group Equistone Partners Europe as part of its €1.5bn Fund IV.

Niki McKenzie (pictured), investment executive at Archangels, said: “This is a good deal for staff, for shareholders and for Scotland.

“CXR Biosciences is an excellent business and will benefit from being part of a larger life sciences group while retaining its base in Dundee.  This move reflects Archangels’ approach of investing early, providing support and further investment to allow our companies to grow and exiting at a mutually advantageous opportunity once they reach maturity.”

Kerry Sharp, head of Scottish Investment Bank said: “Over the last 10 years, we have worked closely with CXR Biosciences to provide an integrated package of support and investment including help with realising their international trade ambitions.

“The acquisition by Concept Life Sciences allowing them to continue to operate in Dundee with the existing team is an optimal outcome. As well as securing the future of CXR in Dundee, this exit is another positive step for Scottish Enterprise in developing globally competitive businesses in Scotland.”

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