Company of the Month February 2021: ICON plc acquires PRA Health Sciences in important $12bn deal

Company of the Month, Irish News | Mon 1 Mar | Author – Business & Finance

ICON plc, a global provider of outsourced drug and device development and commercialisation services, is the Business & Finance Company of the Month February 2021, in association with KPMG

ICON plc, a global provider of outsourced drug and device development and commercialisation services, is the Business & Finance Company of the Month February 2021, in association with KPMG. The company has announced the acquisition of PRA Health Sciences, Inc, in a cash and stock transaction valued at approximately $12 billion, with the per share merger consideration consisting of $80 in cash and 0.4125 shares of ICON stock. The consideration represents an approximately 30% premium to PRA’s closing price as of February 23rd, 2021.

Biopharma and medical device customers will “benefit from broader service offerings and geographic footprint, deeper therapeutic expertise, expansive healthcare technology innovation, and functional talent and capabilities,” according to ICON.  PRA’s mobile and connected health platforms and real world data and information solutions will be combined together with ICON’s Accellacare site network, home health services and wearables expertise.

The transaction is anticipated to be highly accretive delivering double-digit accretion in the first full year and growing to 20%+ thereafter, driven by growth momentum, estimated annual run-rate cost synergies of $150 million, and the combined effective tax rate decreasing to 14%, both to be realised in approximately 4 years.

Dr Steve Cutler, Chief Executive Officer, ICON plc, said: “The combined company will create a new paradigm for accelerating clinical research and bringing new medicines and devices to market. Both ICON and PRA have track records of robust growth and performance and we are ready to build on this unrivalled position of strength, utilising the outstanding talent in both organisations.

“With broader and deeper operational scale combined with innovative technology and real world data solutions, we will enable all customers to reduce their development time and cost. We will be the leading provider of de-centralised and hybrid trial solutions through the integration of our data capabilities, health platforms and Accellacare site network. The transaction will be highly accretive from full year 1 post-close.”

COVID-19 created a platform for change that we cannot ignore.

Colin Shannon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, PRA Health Sciences, said: “I joined PRA 13 years ago to help build a company that would make a difference in the world and transform the way we developed new medicines. The way we do it now takes far too long and costs far too much. Critically ill patients can’t wait for cures. Underserved populations can’t wait for access. Every day counts. COVID-19 created a platform for change that we cannot ignore.

“The pandemic accelerated the adoption of mobile health technologies and healthcare intelligence tools – tools that PRA helped develop – at an unprecedented rate. The union of PRA and ICON will create an organization that has the people, data and technology to bring those cures to patients faster and more efficiently than ever before. We are thrilled to be joining with ICON, a company with a similar culture and values. I’m deeply indebted to PRA’s 19,000 talented employees who have helped us bring this vision closer to reality. We stand together now because patients can’t wait.”

Under the terms of the transaction, PRA shareholders will receive per share $80 in cash and 0.4125 shares of ICON stock. Upon completion of the transaction, PRA shareholders will own approximately 34 per cent of the shares of the combined company and ICON shareholders will own approximately 66 per cent.

The combined company will be headquartered in Dublin, Ireland. Dr. Steve Cutler, Chief Executive Officer of ICON plc, will serve as Chief Executive Officer of the combined company and Brendan Brennan, Chief Financial Officer of ICON plc, will serve as Chief Financial Officer. Ciaran Murray will serve as the Chairman of the Board of Directors.

Current PRA Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Colin Shannon will join the board post the closing of the transaction along with one additional board member from PRA.

Business & Finance, Company of the Month

Business Person the MonthBusiness & Finance, in association with KPMG, recognises excellence in business through the ‘Company of the Month’ award. The Company of the Month award recognises the company which best demonstrates outstanding business leadership, sustainable growth, innovative strategy, strong financial returns and employee development.