It's been on the cards since the fall, and now it's official: Pfizer has agreed to sell hard-capsule manufacturer Capsugel for $2.375 billion in cash to an affiliate of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co L.P. (KKR).
Capsugel, which generated approximately $750 million in revenue and manufactured more than 180 billion hard capsules in 2010, will join KKR’s private equity portfolio, which includes over 60 portfolio companies with over $210 billion of annual revenues and more than 900,000 employees.
The announcement brings to a close the review of the Capsugel business unit announced by Pfizer last fall. In October 2010, Cavan Redmond, senior vice president & group president, Pfizer's Diversified Businesses, said: “Among Pfizer's robust and broad portfolio, Capsugel now represents a unique business, which we believe has strong potential for growth outside of Pfizer.”
Assuming that the transaction meets the customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval in certain jurisdictions, Capsugel will indeed grow outside of Pfizer.
According to initial announcements, Capsugel will maintain its global headquarters in New Jersey. All Pfizer employees currently dedicated to this business will be transferred to Capsugel, said Pfizer in a statement, and Guido Driesen, current president and general manager of Capsugel, will retain leadership upon the completion of the transaction.
“The transaction is an endorsement of Capsugel’s consistent success to date and its potential for future growth with KKR, a firm with deep industry expertise and a long history of partnering with market-leading businesses to take them to the next level,” said Driesen.
“Capsugel’s employees and I are excited to work with KKR and eager to enhance the value of our business in partnership with our customers,” he added.
According to KKR’s website, the asset manager was the first private equity to leverage a buyout in excess of $1 billion, the first friendly tender offer in the buyout of a public company, and the largest buyouts in the US, the Netherlands, Denmark, India, Australia, Turkey, Singapore, and France.
“Capsugel has an excellent portfolio and outstanding reputation for providing high-quality, innovative drug-delivery solutions,” said Henry Kravis and George Roberts, co-founders, co-chairmen and co-CEOs of KKR.
“We look forward to working with Capsugel’s talented employees and investing in this business. We share Capsugel’s enthusiasm for its future potential to grow, develop and continue to deliver an unmatched quality of products,” they added.