Catalent lines up for an IPO worth $100M--or much more

Pharma contracting heavyweight Catalent has set plans for an IPO, planning to raise $100 million and trade under "CTLT."

Catalent's early filing doesn't specify a share count, price range or even a particular stock exchange, and that $100 million figure might be just a placeholder, likely to change before the company prices its offering. And it may well change quite a bit: Renaissance Capital, an IPO research firm, figures Catalent could raise as much as $500 million when all's said and done. 

If everything goes according to plan, Catalent will be the second pharma contracting outfit to go public in the midst of the best market for biotech IPOs since 2000. Last year, market leader Quintiles ($Q) hit Wall Street with a top-of-its-range $947 million raise, and that company's shares are up about 10% since its debut.

Catalent, which private equity outfit Blackstone bought from Cardinal Health for $3.3 billion in 2007, has its hand in nearly every sector of the global pharmaceutical industry. In the fiscal year ended last June, Catalent raked in about $1.8 billion in revenue, a roughly 6% jump over the previous year. The company reported a $46.8 million loss in the same period, as it spent big to expand its global reach and watched cost of sales alone claim about 68% of its revenue.

The New Jersey-headquartered company got about 65% of its revenue from its oral drug formulation business last year, but Catalent has been working to expand its development and clinical services segment. That business grew 51% year-over-year to $404.8 million in fiscal 2013, growth the company credits to its $410 million acquisition of Aptuit's trial supply segment.

Catalent said it plans to spend its IPO raise on outstanding debts and general corporate purposes. The company employs about 8,500 people around the world and has relationships with 85 of the top 100 branded drug marketers, according to its filing.

- read Catalent's statement
- check out the S-1
- here's Renaissance's note

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