Jenner & Block

Firm Client Lonza Divests Water Care Business and Acquires Controlling Stake in Octane Biotech

Firm client Lonza Group AG, one of the world’s leading suppliers to the pharmaceutical, biotech and specialty ingredients markets, entered into an agreement with Platinum Equity whereby Platinum Equity will acquire Lonza’s Water Care business and operations for US$630 million.  Water Care is a leading provider of innovative water treatment solutions and a top global consumer brand in residential pool care with key positions in high-growth industrial and municipal water care markets.  The inclusion of Water Care’s French business division in this transaction remains under discussion.  Subject to customary closing conditions, the deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019. 

In a separate transaction, Lonza acquired a controlling stake in Octane Biotech, a medical technology company with the advanced bioreactors, bioprocesses and biomaterials for regenerative medicine, with the right to acquire full ownership.  The two companies have been collaborating since 2015 on the development of the Cocoon™ system, a patient-scale, closed and automated cell-therapy manufacturing system.

The two deals further strengthen Lonza’s focus on its healthcare continuum strategy and commitment to drive the next generation of manufacturing patient-specific and personalized therapies. 

For the Water Care sale, Partners Kevin Collins and Edward L. Prokop led the firm’s multidisciplinary team that included corporate counsel from Amy Inagaki, Julia Reeves, Sharon K. Moraes and Kristin W. Cleare; financing counsel from Brian Hart and Young Woo (Ariel) Cho; antitrust counsel from Lee Van Voorhis, Karthik Reddy and Tarica Chambliss; tax counsel from Geoffrey Davis; employee benefits counsel from Matthew J. Renaud and Jenna A. Bressel; intellectual property counsel from Steven R. Englund; environmental counsel from Steven Siros and Matthew G. Lawson; real estate counsel from Kristen M. Boike and Angela Williams; and labor and employment counsel from Emma J. Sullivan.

For the Octane transaction, the team included corporate counsel from Mr. Collins, Mr. Prokop, Ms. Cleare and Ms. Reeves, and tax counsel from Mr. Davis.