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Epistem management buy-out

MANCHESTER, United Kingdom- Epistem, the Manchester UK-based Contract Research Company, announces that following investment by Foresight Group it has completed a management buy-out (“MBO”) from genedrive plc.

Epistem provides both pre-clinical and clinical research services across several specialist therapeutic areas, including oncology, gastro-intestinal (GI) diseases and toxicity and inflammatory diseases. Clients include several global pharmaceutical businesses, US Biodefence programmes and niche biotechnology companies.

Foresight’s investment, which includes an injection of growth capital, will support the management team’s clear plans for growth, enabling expansion of the service offering, including further investment in Next Generation Sequencing and Laser Capture technologies to complement current services identifying and validating targets and biomarkers. The team also plan investments in GI disease models, developing both organoid and microbiota services, along with expansion into chronic disease models such as fibrosis. The business will also strengthen its sales and marketing activities across its international customer base.

The buy-out is led by Dr Catherine Booth, one of the original founders of Epistem and expert in GI biology.  Dr Booth will be supported by a strong executive team including Operations Director Julie Tudor, also one of the original founder members of Epistem, and a new sales director and finance director. Foresight has introduced an experienced industry Non-Executive Chairman, Dr Nick Ash.  Dr Ash will be a strong addition to the team having previously been CEO of Source BioScience plc, an international contract research, diagnostic services and analytical chemistry business.

Dr Catherine Booth, CEO, Epistem, commented: “We are delighted to partner with Foresight.  Epistem has huge potential for growth and development.  We have a clear list of initiatives for enhancing and expanding the business and are looking forward to delivering a more comprehensive suite of services to address our customers’ scientific needs. Foresight, complemented by Nick Ash, will provide us with significant financial and strategic support.”

Dr Nick Ash, Non-Executive Chairman, Epistem, added: “I am looking forward to working with Cath and the Management team at Epistem to accelerate the growth of the business, and build a Company that excels in customer service and provides an outstanding environment in which to work.”

Matthew Pomroy, Investment Manager, Foresight, commented: “Epistem is a prime example of the type of company Foresight likes to support, a differentiated and customer-focused business with market leading expertise.  Cath’s dedication and long term involvement, combined with the new expertise from incoming Chairman Dr Nick Ash, gives us confidence that we will see the business go from strength-to-strength.  We look forward to working with the team in the coming years.”