Report: Catalent wants $400M loan to back Aptuit unit buyout

Catalent Pharma Solutions aims to raise $400 million in term loan financing to support the company's buyout of Aptuit's clinical trial supplies business, Bloomberg reported, citing an unnamed source. The purchase of the Aptuit unit, which Catalent announced in August, was touted as a way for the company to improve its capacity to provide drug supplies for clinical trials to sites around the globe.

Bloomberg reported Catalent had tapped Morgan Stanley to handle the financing deal, and a lender call was slated to take place on Tuesday. When the acquisition was announced in August, the Somerset, NJ-based provider of services for the biopharma industry said the cost of the Aptuit unit would be $410 million, and the deal was expected to close by the end of calendar year 2011. The company declined Bloomberg's request for comment on the financing. FierceCRO left a message for a company spokesman but had not heard back as of the publishing of this report.

With the addition of the Aptuit unit, Catalent extends its ability to furnish customers with clinical trial supplies, and the buyer has said the acquisition would make it the world's No. 2 provider of clinical supply services. The transaction reflects biopharma companies' reliance on service providers like Catalent to supply them with experimental treatments that are being tested at sites both domestic and overseas.

"This transaction builds important expertise, scale and capability for our Development & Clinical Services business to better meet our customers' needs globally," John Chiminski, Catalent's president and CEO, said back when the deal was revealed in August. "This transaction also strengthens Catalent's global leadership in development solutions and advanced delivery technologies for drugs and biologics."

- check out the Bloomberg article