Sartorius Stedim Biotech, a leading international supplier for the pharma and biotech industries, acquired the German-based Cellca last Wednesday. With this acquisition, Sartorius is strengthening its leading position as a biologics manufacturer.
Last year, we visited Cellca during our first biotech Tour in Germany. The company is offering cell line and process development for large-scale protein production of biologics in mammalian (CHO) cells.
With this acquisition, Sartorius Stedim Biotech is further expanding its service offering for process development. Sartorius has already strengthened this segment after its two recent acquisitions of Uk-based BioOutsource and TAP Biosystems.
Funded in 2005, Cellca generated sale revenues of approximately €6m for 2014 alone with around 30 employees. This acquisition should not be a financial problem for Sartorius, as the company made a €29m net profit in the mere first quarter of 2015 and certainly seems financially secure to acquire Cellca entirely.
The strange thing in this story is that Cellca’s initial investors include Rentschler, a direct competitor of Sartorius. Even more than an investor, Rentschler is hosting Cellca on its headquarter in Laupheim, Germany and is also one of its main customers (Rentschler outsourced some of its services to Cellca). According to an internal source from Rentschler, Cellca’s process is extremely optimized and performant and embodies a strategic asset for Rentschler.
Since no further details have been revealed on the acquisition, we don’t know what’s behind this announcement, but Sartorius is definitely eating small companies one after the other to keep its leading position.
If you want more details about Cellca, watch the following video interview of its CEO.