Capsugel snaps up Bend with eye on oral formulations

Contract manufacturer Capsugel has signed a deal to buy Oregon's Bend Research, planning to fold that company's oral drug delivery technology into its growing innovative dosing business.

Neither company is disclosing financial terms, but the deal would give Capsugel Bend's spray-dried dispersion technology, a formulation method designed to increase a compound's stability and bioavailability.

Bend's tech will fold into Capsugel's recently launched Dosage Form Solutions business, which develops targeted-release capsules and, thanks to a March buyout of Encap Drug Delivery, offers liquid and semi-solid encapsulations to its clients.

Bend also brings along technologies for modified release, inhalation delivery and biotherapeutic processing, and CEO Rod Ray said the Capsugel acquisition is the ideal way to push his company's efforts forward.

"We will expand our industry-leading capability to meet low bioavailability formulation challenges; strengthen the global footprint to support customer partnerships around the world; and enhance our ability to scale-up and commercially manufacture the customer compounds we help formulate," Ray said in a statement.

For Capsugel, private equity owner KKR has been greenlighting acquisitions and partnerships since buying the CMO from Pfizer ($PFE) for about $2.4 billion in 2011, fueling the company's mission to become the market leader in formulation services.

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