Reprocell purchases Biopta to expand its drug discovery services


Biopta aims to grow its workforce to 30 over the next three years

Japanese regenerative medicine company Reprocell has acquired Scottish life sciences company Biopta, a drug development firm spun out of Glasgow Caledonian University, for about £5.5m.

Yokohama-based Reprocell, a specialist in the development of stem cell technologies, said the transaction would strengthen its drug discovery services aimed at the pharmaceutical industry.

The acquisition will also see an immediate investment to expand Biopta’s contract research services.

Biopta, which is led by CEO and co-founder David Bunton, will continue to operate from its headquarters in Glasgow. The firm aims to grow its workforce from 18 to 30 over the next three years.

Bunton said: 'The acquisition by Reprocell is a great opportunity to build on the solid platform we have in outsourced drug discovery services. Scotland is known for the quality of its scientists and customer service and Reprocell’s investment recognises these strengths.

'We have had a close partnership with BioServe, another Reprocell Group company, for the past five years, which has helped us establish a very successful US subsidiary. We see the acquisition as the natural next step in the growth of the UK and US businesses.'

Reprocell’s CEO, Dr Chikafumi Yokoyama, said the acquisition of Biopta would allow the company to expand its range of drug discovery support products.

Biopta has developed a network of clinical partners in the UK and US to provide human tissue samples for its research into diseases such as asthma, Crohn’s disease and psoriasis.

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The deal will see ReproCELL acquire 100% of Biopta, which has received investment from Braveheart Investment Group, TriCapital, the Scottish Investment Bank, the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise and individual investors.