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Highlander Partners to Sell Bettera Brands in $1 Billion Deal

October 15, 2021 BeautyMatter
October 15, 2021
Evie Fjord via Unsplash

Highlander Partners entered into a definitive agreement to sell Bettera Brands to Catalent in a billion-dollar deal.

WHO: Bettera Brands was formed through a series of four acquisitions beginning in 2017 that shaped it into a leading manufacturer of consumer-preferred, high-quality ingredient nutritional vitamins, minerals, and supplements. Bettera, headquartered in Plano, Texas, maintains four manufacturing operations in California, Virginia, New Jersey, and Indiana.

Highlander Partners is a Dallas-based private investment firm which manages over $2 billion of its own proprietary capital. The firm focuses on making investments in businesses in targeted industries in which the principals of the firm have significant operating and investing experience. Highlander Partners employs a buy-and-build investment approach, creating value by helping companies grow both organically and through acquisitions.

With over 85 years serving the industry, Catalent is the leading global provider of advanced delivery technologies, development, and manufacturing solutions for drugs, biologics, cell and gene therapies, and consumer health products. Catalent employs approximately 15,000 people, including over 2,400 scientists and technicians, at more than 45 facilities, and in fiscal year 2020 generated over $3 billion in annual revenue.

WHY: The deal adds high-growth gummy vitamins and supplements to Catalent's portfolio.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: "In 2017, we started with a simple investment thesis of creating manufacturing capabilities around fortified/functional products in consumer-preferred formats," stated Jeff L. Hull, President and CEO of Highlander Partners. "As consumers have become increasingly health-conscious, functional products in gummy, soft chew, and lozenge delivery forms have developed and grown to become a significant part of the market. Given the substantial advances in delivery technologies, along with the increased health awareness, consumers are embracing these experiential formats as part of their everyday wellness routine."

Jeff Partridge, a partner with Highlander who also served as Bettera's CEO, added, "We identified a need early on and quickly assembled assets and a management team to capitalize on the demand and growth. Developing certified facilities, maintaining strict compliance standards, and creating highly technical research and development capabilities was not an easy task. It is very gratifying to see the business that Bettera has evolved into, and we believe Catalent is the right company to take this business to the next level."

“As the leading global innovator of softgel and oral technologies, Catalent has a strong, long-standing presence in the rapidly expanding consumer health and nutraceutical marketplace. This acquisition allows us to significantly accelerate the growth of our consumer health business and offer customers access to the substantial potential in gummies, soft chews, and lozenges, which are all experiencing double-digit growth," commented Dr. Aris Gennadios, President, Softgel and Oral Technologies, Catalent. "This acquisition is a key strategic move for Catalent's Consumer Health business, where our leadership in manufacturing technologies and formulation can offer customers more product development opportunities and add manufacturing capacity in this dynamic and growing segment."

DETAILS:

  • Highlander Partners to sell Bettera Brands to Catalent for $1 billion in cash deal.
  • The WSJ reported that people familiar with the matter said Bettera has sales of about $150 million and is forecast to grow at least 20% annually in the short term.
  • The deal includes most of the roughly 500 Bettera employees along with manufacturing and packaging assets.
  • Katten is serving as legal counsel to Highlander. Fried Frank is acting as legal counsel to Catalent.
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