Raleigh, North Carolina-based INC Research has acquired Australian CRO Trident Clinical Research in an aggressive move that gets INC into a fast-growingmarket for early phase clinical studies. Financial terms between the two private companies were not disclosed. Under the agreement, Trident becomes a wholly owned affiliate of INC Research. The acquisition brings Trident’s operations in Australia, New Zealand and India into INC’s fold. Trident’s operations in Mumbai, India will complement INC’s existing operations in Gurgaon, India.
“Trident is an important piece in our strategy to build a sustainable CRO business that both satisfies and anticipates the global drug development needs of our customers,” INC Research CEO James Ogle said in a statement.
Adelaide, Australia-based Trident was founded in 1997. The company has completed more than 500 clinical studies across all phases, including more than 100 phase 1 studies. INC Research cites data from the Economist Intelligence Unit showing that compared to other geographic regions, Australia offers significant cost advantages, an efficient regulatory system and a desirable location to conduct early phase clinical trials. The company says that Australia has achieved rapid study timelines without the need for an investigational new drug application with regulators or clinical trials agreement with institutes conducting drug studies. Those reasons have made Australia “a prime destination” for conducting first-in-man and early clinical studies, the company said.
Garth Tierney, managing director and co-founder of Trident, will become general manager, Australia at INC Research. Tierney was a veteran of CRO industry leader Quintiles before leaving to start Trident in 1997.
INC has been on something of a buying spree this year. Trident marks INC’s second major acquisition in as many months and the third this year. In May, INC announced its purchase of the larger Kendle, a move that vaulted INC much closer to the top CROs Quintiles, PPD (NYSE:PPDI) and Covance (NYSE:CVD). INC’s acquisition of Kendle is expected to close in the third quarter. INC boosted its consulting capabilities with the purchase of Morrisville, North Carolina-based AVOS Life Sciences in January.