Astorg and Goldman Sachs to exit HRA Pharma

Astorg (“Astorg”) and Goldman Sachs Asset Management (“Goldman Sachs”) announced they have received a binding offer and entered into exclusive negotiations with Perrigo Company plc (“Perrigo”) for the sale of Héra SAS (“HRA” or “HRA Pharma”).

HRA Pharma is a category leader in over-the-counter (“OTC”) healthcare products across areas including women’s health and compromised skin, operating via brands including Ella, Compeed, and Mederma.

Alongside these products, HRA’s portfolio of Rare Diseases drugs provides treatment for Adrenocortical Carcinoma, as well as Cushings’ Syndrome.

Both divisions within HRA Pharma have seen strong growth over the last six years.

The proposed acquisition by Perrigo is expected to facilitate accelerated innovation and will enable HRA to continue to provide high quality products to patients worldwide. In particular, the proposed acquisition will help build on HRA’s recent successful expansion in the US and draw on its strength in Europe.

In recent years, HRA has stood out as a rapidly expanding, innovation-driven consumer healthcare company in Europe and across the globe. HRA’s management team has a track record of acquiring, integrating, and accelerating the growth of brands under its ownership. This year, HRA launched Hana, the first oral contraceptive pill available for purchase in the UK without a prescription, demonstrating the strength of its own research platform, as well as its regulatory expertise in Rx to OTC switches. HRA has expanded geographically with direct operations launched in the US and China, built strong digital capabilities with online sales now representing 10% of its total sales, and broadened its product portfolio, enabling HRA to triple its sales between 2015 and 2021.

HRA would continue to operate independently under Perrigo’s ownership and its CEO David Wright and the management team would remain in place.

David Wright CEO, HRA stated, “Since 1996, HRA has been extremely successful in developing and growing brands and innovative solutions to meet consumer medical needs. Our focus over the last four years has been to substantially grow Compeed, Mederma, and Ella as well as building a solid platform of new innovations including ground breaking Rx to OTC switches. In addition, the Rare Disease business has continuously grown double digit over the last four years. I’m incredibly proud of the hard work of the HRA team, who have helped establish the company as a world-class organization – one positioned to now contemplate a new chapter of its journey as part of the Perrigo family.”

Thierry Timsit, Managing Partner and CEO of Astorg and Judith Charpentier, Partner and Head of Healthcare commented: “Driving the transformation from a family-owned, mostly French company into one of the fastest-growing global OTC leaders in 5 years has been an extremely gratifying experience. It was only made possible under the visionary leadership of David and his entire team, working hand in hand with Astorg, Goldman Sachs and the founding families. With a healthy product pipeline, strong digital channels, proven M&A capabilities, and numerous new US opportunities, we are convinced that a new partnership with Perrigo will lead HRA to new heights.”

Michael Bruun, Partner and Head of the EMEA Private Equity business within Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Adam Dawson, Managing Director and Head of EMEA Healthcare Private Equity within Goldman Sachs Asset Management, said “We are extremely proud of HRA’s success under David and the broader management team and are excited about the opportunity for HRA to join forces with Perrigo. Using our deep healthcare sector experience, digital capabilities and global footprint, and through a successful partnership with management, Astorg and HRA’s other shareholders, we are proud to have been able to support, expand and build the company into the high growth, global consumer healthcare leader that it is today.”

The selling shareholders and HRA are advised by Sawaya Partners, Goldman Sachs Investment Banking Division, Rothschild & Co, Latham & Watkins, Dechert, Jones Day, PricewaterhouseCoopers Advisory and Ernst & Young Avocats.

The proposed transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2022 subject to, among other things, regulatory and antitrust review and approval, as well as works council information and consultation processes.


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