Media Release - March 9th 2005
AMP Capital Investors today announced the purchase of a $20 million stake in speciality pharmaceutical company, Orphan Australia, by its new Private Equity Fund III.
Founded over nine years ago by CEO Alastair Young, Orphan Australia is the largest speciality pharmaceutical company focused on third party products in Australia. It specialises in the registration, marketing and distribution of niche pharmaceutical products used to treat serious or life threatening disorders to healthcare groups.
AMP Capital Investors’ Co-Head of Private Equity, Marcus Darville, said the fund’s investment in Orphan Australia reflects its focus on mid-sized companies offering high growth potential in the healthcare, consumer goods and business services sectors.
“Our strategy for growing Orphan’s business will involve taking full advantage of opportunities presented by the speciality pharmaceutical sector in Australia.
“The speciality pharmaceutical sector is a rapidly growing segment overseas and in Australia where companies have increasingly become highly valued by the stockmarket.
“We believe Orphan Australia’s business model, partly inspired by similar niche pharmaceutical businesses such as Swedish Orphan and Orphan Europe but adapted to the specifics of the Australian healthcare environment, gives the company a strong competitive advantage in this market.
“Orphan Australia is a highly focused company already achieving growth of over 20 per cent per annum. Our investment will provide Orphan Australia with greater financial resources and the ability to broaden its management team to enable the company to maintain its high growth rate as it enters the next stage of its development,” said Mr Darville.
“We believe there are opportunities to grow the business by developing new areas of therapeutic speciality to complement and broaden the existing strengths of the company which include gastroenterology and hematology treatments.”
Orphan Australia CEO Alastair Young said the deal marks the beginning of an important phase of growth for Orphan Australia.
“We are very pleased to be working with the AMP Capital Investors private equity team who bring established expertise in developing healthcare businesses in Australia.”
AMP Capital Investors’ acquisition of a stake in Orphan follows its successful investment in healthcare business Vision Group. Vision grew fivefold during the three years of AMP’s investment and now has a market capitalisation of over $200 million.
Private Equity Fund III is the third private equity fund launched by AMP Capital Investors following the success of Business Development Funds (BDF) I and II which are both fully invested. Since BDF I was established nine years ago, AMP Capital Investors private equity team has made in excess of 25 investments and has sold 18 companies by trade or public offering.
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