UPDATED: Accelrys inks $50M Qumas takeover to continue deal-driven expansion

The past few years has been a busy period for Accelrys ($ACCL). After merging with Symyx in 2010, the California-based software developer went hunting for bolt-on acquisitions, inking a series of takeover deals. Now Accelrys has snapped up Irish compliance software business Qumas for $50 million.

Having acquired Qumas and its electronic regulatory document management capabilities, Accelrys plans to integrate the system with its existing offerings. Electronic laboratory notebooks, laboratory information management systems and other software packages offered by Accelrys are all potential data sources for Qumas' products. Packaging tools to automate regulatory compliance with other software components is part of Accelrys' push to build a platform spanning discovery and R&D through manufacturing and supply.

Accelrys has worked with Qumas over the past year, over which time it saw enough positives to push on with a takeover. The move was partly motivated by a belief that Qumas is helping biopharma companies with the tricky task of managing regulatory files in an era of outsourcing and joint ventures. Accelrys CEO Max Carnecchia named the ability to establish a secure, cloud-based system for working with different internal and external teams as one of the motivations for the takeover.

The significant overlap in clients also appealed to Carnecchia. Buying Qumas gives Accelrys another link to these shared customers, while also providing it a route into some companies with which it is yet to work. Qumas lists Boehringer Ingelheim, Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) and Takeda among its clients. 

Qumas is the eighth acquisition Accelrys has made in the past four years, but there is still more to come. "We consider the best use of the company's excess cash is to purchase growth companies that fit our stringent acquisition criteria. We are currently focusing on assets in the non-life sciences space but also continue to pursue assets in life sciences quality and compliance area," Chief Financial Officer Michael Piraino told FierceBiotech IT.

Accelrys also updated its Materials Studio modeling and simulation software this week.

- here's the takeover press release
- check out the product news

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