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Vectura agrees £958mln takeover by Carlyle Group

The group has also provided a trading update on the first quarter of 2021

Vectura Group PLC - Vectura agrees £958mln takeover by Carlyle Group

Vectura Group PLC (LON:VEC) announced it has agreed on a £958mln takeover by Carlyle Group, a private equity firm with US$260bn of assets under management.

The board has recommended an offer price of 155p per share, which is a 32% premium to Tuesday’s closing price.

READ: Private equity firms and their strategy - a two-minute explainer

“Vectura has made strong progress since embarking on its new strategy in 2019 to become a leading inhalation focused contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO), whilst continuing to deliver strong financial and operational results in its royalties and product supply businesses,” said chairman Bruno Angelici.

“While the Vectura directors remain confident in the long term fundamentals of the Vectura Group, we believe that this is an attractive offer for Vectura shareholders... The offer reflects the quality, strength and long term performance of Vectura's businesses and its future growth potential."

In a separate announcement, the pharma company said it continues to make progress with its CDMO strategy, with deal momentum building in 2021 and a good funnel of potential deals.

Revenues for the CDMO business in 2021 are expected to remain in line with previous guidance of more than tripling compared to 2020.

However, first-quarter performance has been similar to the second half of 2020 due to the impact of COVID-19, with revenues for flutiform coming below guidance of £75-80mln.

Gross profit remains in line with previous guidance, driven by an improved margin expectation.

In the first quarter of 2021 Vectura has received further payments of £13mln with respect to GSK's Ellipta products, of which £6.9mln relates to payments under the legacy Skyepharma licence, and £6.1mln relates to the US litigation award.

The group has also put its oral manufacturing facility in Lyon up for sale in a process expected to complete later this year.

"We have previously written about our view that returning Vectura to a long-term growth story is likely to take a significant amount of time and effort, and as such this outcome is broadly aligned with our own previously expressed views," analysts at Peel Hunt noted.

Shares soared 32% to 161p on Wednesday morning.

--Adds analyst comment, shares--

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