Thursday, November 4, 2010

Avantor Performance Materials to acquire RFCL Ltd from ICICI Venture

NEW DELHI, INDIA: Avantor Performance Materials Holdings S.A. has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire RFCL Ltd from ICICI Venture Funds Management Co. Ltd.

Avantor, previously known as Mallinckrodt Baker, was acquired by an affiliate of New Mountain Capital, L.L.C. in August 2010. Avantor and its subsidiaries manufacture and market high-performance chemistries and materials around the world under two well-known and respected brand names, J.T.Baker and Mallinckrodt Chemicals.

Headquartered in New Delhi, RFCL is a leader in laboratory reagents and consumables as well as products for the medical diagnostics market in India. Through its Rankem division, RFCL offers over 20,000 different laboratory products to more than 5,000 customers across a variety of industries including pharmaceuticals, biotech, research organizations and educational institutions.

RFCL’s Diagnova division offers approximately 2,000 products used by over 6,000 customers primarily in the Indian in vitro diagnostics, medical devices and life science research markets, which cater to hospitals, pathology laboratories and blood banks.

Avantor identified RFCL as an attractive target to build on its current presence in the laboratory and pharmaceutical markets in India. Avantor and New Mountain Capital will provide RFCL with significant financial and strategic resources to support their growth initiatives.

“We believe that the combined Avantor and RFCL business will be positioned as a leading player in the laboratory, pharmaceutical, electronic materials and diagnostics industries in India,” said Raj Gupta, Chairman of Avantor and a Senior Advisor to New Mountain Capital. “We look forward to working with the RFCL leadership team to capture the full potential from this combination.”

Matt Holt, Director at New Mountain Capital, said, “New Mountain believes that the acquisition of RFCL represents a significant step forward to expand Avantor’s global presence in important geographies and end markets, and we look forward to supporting the management teams as they continue to build the combined business.”

“We are very pleased with this transaction as it will bring the best of opportunities for RFCL and its management and employees for the future,” said Prashant Purker, executive director at ICICI Venture. “This type of outcome is consistent with ICICI Venture’s way of investing where we create value for all stakeholders. In 2009, RFCL sold its animal health business to Pfizer Pharmaceuticals India Private Limited. With this transaction, we have effected a complete exit from our investment in RFCL.”

“We are very enthusiastic about the prospect of joining Avantor,” said Sushil Mehta, MD of RFCL. “We see significant growth opportunities resulting from the combination of Avantor and RFCL, and we believe that both Avantor and New Mountain share our values and our vision to realize these opportunities. We look forward to the prospect of continuing to grow with Avantor to enhance the service and value we provide to our customers.”

Lazard India Pvt Ltd acted as the sole financial advisor to Avantor and New Mountain Capital. Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP and AZB & Partners acted as legal advisors to Avantor and New Mountain Capital.

NM Rothschild and Sons (India) Pvt Ltd acted as the sole financial advisor to ICICI Venture for this transaction. Hemant Sahai Associates acted as sole legal advisor to ICICI Venture and RFCL.

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