26 Jul 2011
YFM Equity Partners backs third Fishawack acquisition
YFM Equity Partners has backed Fishawack’s acquisition of Swiss-based Phocus Services GmbH, supporting Fishawack’s goal of becoming the leading independent global medical communications business.
Fishawack was founded in 2001 by Oliver Dennis and has over 80 employees based in Knutsford and Abingdon in the UK and an office in Philadelphia, USA. It provides medical communications advice and services (www.fishawack.com) to 12 of the top 20 largest healthcare companies.
Phocus is based in Basle, Switzerland and has a subsidiary in New Jersey, USA. Founded by Dr Diana Barkley in 1995, it offers a similar range of medical communications services as Fishawack (www.phocus.com), but with the addition of market access communications. Dr Diana Barkley will remain with the business and becomes a shareholder in The Fishawack Group.
YFM Equity Partners originally invested in Fishawack through a Management Buyout in 2008. Since then, YFM Equity Partners has supported the management through their strategy of growing the business by acquisition. This has included the acquisition of US-based Nexus in 2009 (now Fishawack Communications Inc) and Alpha-Plus Medical Communications in 2010. With this latest acquisition, Angela Lane, an experienced non-executive director will join the board as chair of Fishawack.
Paul Cannings, Director at YFM Equity Partners said: “We are pleased to continue our support of Fishawack’s buy and build strategy. This latest acquisition will help both businesses support larger accounts, increase their breadth of service offering and strengthen their strategic advisory capabilities.”
Oliver Dennis, CEO of Fishawack commented: “This acquisition means that Fishawack now has a presence in three of the major pharmaceutical locations in the world. Our clients are at the heart of what we do and this growth enables us to deliver tailored quality services from locations close to our clients with the support of a larger and more international team. YFM and The Co-operative Bank have been very supportive partners.”
Corporate finance advice on the deal was provided by Dan Jackson and Simon Mills of Langtons, Craig Scott and Mike Murphy of Hill Dickinson led the legal advice to Fishawack on the acquisition and investment financing and David Jenny of Vischer provided Swiss legal support on the acquisition. Alison Meaken of Osborne Clarke advised YFM regarding its equity investment; financial due diligence also came from Langtons. Andrew O’Mahony of Brabners Chaffe Street advised the Co-operative Bank.