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Sanos Group specializes being a contract organisation for pharma and biotech companies looking for clinical trial services. Image Credit: Agency

Dubai: Regional investment houses are stocking up on their healthcare assets. Investcorp in Bahrain has acquired Denmark’s Sanos Group, which specializes in clinical trials for the pharma and biotech clients.

The global market for ‘contract research organisations’ – and Sanos is one such – is estimated at $50 billion and growing at 10 per cent annually. The momentum will pick up further with all the trials taking place to find a permanent solution for the COVID-19.

The Sanos Group consists of a CRO specialized in osteoarthritis and a ‘site management organization’ focussing on lifestyle and age-related diseases.

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Daniel Lopez-Cruz, Head of Private Equity, Europe at Investcorp, said; “Sanos has all the key attributes that we look for in potential investments. It is an entrepreneurial organization with a clearly differentiated value proposition as well as a leading market position in a growing, resilient and mission-critical industry.

“Sanos has established itself as the partner of choice for pharma and biotech companies looking to conduct clinical trials for osteoarthritis, a condition for which there is currently a very high unmet medical need given the large and growing population of people being affected by it - and the fact that there is no cure for it at the moment.”

We focus on investment opportunities in mid-sized companies with strong growth potential, solid cashflow, prominent positioning within their industry, and best-in-class management teams

- Tarek Al Mahjoub, Head of UAE and Oman for Investcorp’s Private Wealth

The plan is to push Sanos’ expansion through new research clinics in the US, which is the largest market for clinical trials, and in other European countries.

Investcorp had picked up healthcare assets in China in recent months. Another heavy investor in the sector has been Abu Dhabi's Mubadala.


The Sanos deal is Investcorp’s 11th investment in the healthcare sector and the third in Europe, following its acquisition of a majority stake in Cambio Healthcare Systems, which operates in the Electronic Health Records market, and Acura, which provides dental care across Germany.