Avacta Group has acquired Coris Bioconcept for £7.4 million and an extra £3 million payout based on future business performance.
Avacta is a life sciences company developing targeted oncology drugs and diagnostics.
Coris, based in Gembloux, Belgium and established in 1996, develops, manufactures and markets rapid diagnostic test kits, mainly lateral flow tests, for use by healthcare professionals. Coris is ISO 13485 certified and markets its products through distributors in Europe, Asia, South America, Africa and Oceania.
Avacta’s Diagnostics division is driving an impressive growth strategy through mergers and acquisitions with the aim of broadening access to high quality diagnostics. The strategy is focused on both acquiring routes into the diagnostics market and appropriate IP-rich product portfolios. The first acquisition, Launch Diagnostics, in October 2022 provides the group with a well-established route to market in the centralised professional healthcare market, primarily in the UK and France.
“The acquisition of Coris provides the group with a broad, professional-use rapid test product portfolio. Complementing the acquisition of Launch Diagnostics last year, the acquisition represents an important step in establishing a full-spectrum in-vitro diagnostics business covering centralised, pathology laboratory diagnostics, as well as decentralised, point-of-care testing solutions outside the hospital setting,” commented Dr Alastair Smith, Chief Executive Officer, Avacta Group.
Challenge of antibiotic resistance
“Antibiotic resistance is a major global challenge and we strongly believe that the market for antimicrobial resistance (AMR) testing is one with good future growth prospects. We are particularly pleased, therefore, to have added an AMR product portfolio to the group with this acquisition.
Operationally, Coris employs 35 members of staff split across Production, Sales, Marketing, Quality Control, Regulation and Administration. In March 2023, the business completed the construction of a new 10,700 sq.ft. production, offices and warehouse facility in Gembloux.
Coris’ product portfolio comprises diagnostic tests for respiratory, gastro-enteric and blood-borne pathogens (bacteria, viruses and parasites) and for the detection of antibiotic resistance markers. As part of this portfolio, Coris markets a COVID-19 lateral flow test. Due to this, Avacta has taken the decision to halt the redevelopment of its own AffiDX SARS-CoV-2 antigen lateral flow test.
Coris management team to remain
The existing Coris management team will remain with the business and work closely with Avacta Diagnostics businesses to drive growth through improved distribution channels and an expanded product range. Avacta will transfer its lateral flow product development activities to Coris and support that activity through ongoing development of Affimer reagents for new products or to enhance existing ones.