EQT bought control of Spain’s Igenomix, a world leader in the biotechnology sector, with an innovative product portfolio focused on prenatal genetic diagnostics, established in 2011 as a spin-off of the Valentiano de Infertilidad (IVI) Institute. The majority stake was sold by the Charme III fund, managed by Charme Capital Partners, the asset management company led by Matteo Cordero di Montezemolo (see the press release here).
According to MF Milano Finanza and BeBeez, however, the fund will shortly reinvest 15% in Igenomix, as part of a new, broader operation, which envisages the creation of a newco to which the Igenomix minority will be added plus the holdings in other European companies in the sector for which the fund is currently in exclusive negotiations. Igenomix managers, in turn, will continue to lead the company and be minority shareholders.
Charme had bought 75% of the capital of Igenomix in 2016 (see here a previous post by BeBeez) and Graham Snudden, co-founder of BlueGenome, a spin-off of the University of Cambridge, joined Charme with a minority investment. The scientific director and co-founder Carlos Simon (who previously controlled 30%) and ceo David Jimenez (who controlled 5%) also reinvested with a minority. The co-founders, Antonio Pellicer and José Remohí sold instead their 60% stake and Carlo Bertomeu (chairman of Air Nostrum) sold his 5%.
Since 2016 Igenomix has implemented an ambitious investment plan aimed at the international expansion of the company, creating in just 3 years a global platform of laboratories in the main world markets, in contact with the most important assisted fertilization clinics in the world with the specific objective of exponentially increase the chances of success of pregnancies ensuring the health of newborns. Today Igenomix manages 15 advanced laboratories in 13 countries around the world and has recently obtained, thanks to the investments launched by Charme, new patents with great potential, currently in the phase of preclinical studies.
From 2015 to date, Igenomix’s revenues have grown by 54% per year with an increase in ebitda of 53% per year. In 2018 the company reported revenues of around 60 million and an ebitda of 22 million, with a neutral net financial position. According to MF Milano Finanza and BeBeez, the company was valued at over 400 million euros.
Charme III fund, which collected 650 million euros between 2015 and 2016, has made seven investments to date, all of which are majorities. In particular, two investments in Spain: in addition to Igenomix, also in Gloval, among the Spanish market leaders in the real estate valuation sector for the banking system. Charme III then carried out two investments in the United Kingdom, including the Witherslack (among the UK market leaders in the education sector, where the UK is historically one of the world leaders for know-how and specialized expertise); and three investments in Italy in ATOP (one of the world leaders in the field of industrial automation for the production of electric motors in the automotive and e-mobility sector), Fiocchi Munizioni (leader in the production and marketing of small caliber ammunition from premium positioning and at mainly sporting and leisure use) and OCS (Italian leader in consumer credit software).