Abzena to raise £20m through a share placing and acquire The Chemistry Research Solution


TCRS will give Abzena another operating presence in the US on the East coast

Abzena, a life sciences group based in Cambridge, UK, and San Diego in the US, has conditionally raised £20m through a share placement and will buy The Chemistry Research Solution (TCRS) in the US for US$15m (£10m).

TCRS is a specialist contract chemistry and bioconjugation company based near Philadelphia, with expertise in producing and analysing antibody drug conjugates (ADCs).

Abzena has raised the funds by way of a placing of 35,004,972 new Ordinary Shares at 60p each with certain existing and new shareholders.

The company will pay $15m to acquire TCRS, which will be made up of $8.8m in cash, the issue 3,609,978 Ordinary Shares and $0.9m in restricted stock units over 901,697 Ordinary Shares and assumed long term debt of $1.5m.

Abzena said the deal would broaden the firm's service capability and, with further investment, provide GMP manufacturing capability for ADCs. It also creates new cross-selling opportunities for Abzena’s antibody engineering and biopharmaceutical manufacturing services, and establishes another operating presence in the US, in a key East coast life sciences hub, complementing the West coast location of Abzena company, PacificGMP.

The proceeds of the share placing will be used for the acquisition, biomanufacturing capital expenditure, and for further research and development.

This is an important strategic step in our ambition to build Abzena into a self-sustaining business

Dr John Burt, CEO of Abzena said the acquisition of TCRS is 'an important strategic step in our ambition to build Abzena into a self-sustaining business and ‘partner of choice’ for R&D organisations developing biopharmaceutical drugs.'

He added: 'TCRS is an established, profitable company providing chemistry and conjugation services that complement our own. Bringing TCRS into the Abzena Group will enable wider access to Abzena’s proprietary ADC technologies and, in time, TCRS will be able to provide our partners with larger scale and GMP manufacture.'

Dr Naresh Jain, Managing Director of TCRS said: 'Joining forces with Abzena has been an easy decision to make. The two companies are very complementary in customer base and the services we offer.'

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Following the completion of the acquisition of TCRS, Dr Jain will become Senior Vice President (ADC Biomanufacturing) & Global Head of Chemistry for Abzena, reporting to Burt.