July 2022: Kester Capital, the primary buyout specialist, announces that two of its portfolio companies, Rephine and Jollyes, have completed strategic acquisitions. In addition, Kester has provided follow-on funding to another portfolio company, Optibrium, to accelerate development and expansion. This investment activity comes on the back of the recent sale of Avania, which delivered in excess of 8x ROI for Kester.
Rephine, a leading provider of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) audits and regulatory consulting services to the pharmaceutical industry, has acquired Barcelona-based GxP audit organisation Forum Auditorias, and its manufacturing supply chain compliance consultancy TDV. The acquisition will create the clear global leader in the GMP audit library market, more than doubling the size of the library to 750 current GMP audit reports, spanning 2,500+ pharmaceutical products, and providing coverage of 100+ countries encompassing all major manufacturing locations. The consolidated organisation operates from three primary locations – the UK, Spain and China – and employs c.100 staff.
Optibrium, a leading provider of drug discovery software to the pharmaceutical and biotech industries, has also secured further investment from Kester. The investment will be used to further accelerate the development and roll-out of Optibrium's AI-enabled drug discovery technologies. The funding follows initial investment by Kester in February 2021 and reflects the success of the business which has delivered ARR growth in excess of 25% for the last 3 years.
Finally, Jollyes, a leading UK retailer of specialty pet products, has completed the acquisition of Penparc, a chain of pet retail stores across the Midlands. The acquisition of Penparc follows Jollyes' acquisition of The Pet Store and Bannerbrook Pets in 2021.
Kester also recently announced the refinancings of Atec, a leader in digital insurance distribution, and Vixio, a leader in the provision of regulatory and compliance data, information and analysis, following an extended period of strong trading at both businesses.