Oliver Dennis chose LDC to back his international growth strategy for Fishawack Health

CASE STUDY

Fishawack Health: £18.5m follow on funding

We set the wheels in motion on our ambitious expansion plans.

Management buyout enabled five acquisitions to further Fishawack Health’s international expansion.

Sector
  • Healthcare

Fishawack Health is a UK-headquartered global healthcare communications agency.

Deal type
  • Management buyout
Deal value

£38m

Exit type
  • Private equity sale
Exit date

March 2020

We backed Fishawack Health’s existing management team, led by CEO Oliver Dennis, in a £38m buyout in 2017. The team had clear international ambitions, and partnering with LDC gave them the additional capital and expertise to deliver a rapid buy and build strategy.

We provided a further £18.5m in follow-on funding over three years to help the business extend its footprint across North America via acquisition, tripling its annual revenues.

Established in 2001, Fishawack Health is a UK-headquartered global healthcare communications agency. The firm’s strategic and scientific focus makes it ideally placed to solve complex brand, portfolio and enterprise level challenges for healthcare and pharmaceutical organisations.

A clear international vision

In January 2017, we backed CEO Oliver Dennis and his management team to deliver on their international vision for the business, in a buyout which valued the firm at £38m.

Fishawack Health already had a strong track record for growth and saw an opportunity for international expansion by delivering on global briefs from their clients that operate in multiple geographies. The leadership were also looking to diversify its service offering to provide more holistic healthcare communications services to its customers.

Partnering with LDC gave the management team the capital and expertise to deliver on their ambitious international growth strategy.

Follow on funding for funds five acquisitions

During our three-year partnership, we provided a further £18.5m of follow on funding to support the management team to complete five key international acquisitions, including US-based 2e Creative, in August 2019.

Between 2017 and 2020, the business increased revenues by 300% and headcount by 250%, firmly cementing itself as a market leader in North America and Europe.

Today, Fishawack Health is truly international with 14 offices in Europe and the US and more than 850 employees. The organisation serves more than 100 customers across 300 different drug compounds, including all of the top 20 global pharmaceutical companies and a range of innovative biotech and medical device companies.

Our goal is to increase the range of healthcare communications services that we can offer to commercial and medical affairs teams internationally, and with the financial and strategic support of the team at LDC we have been able to do just that.”
Oliver Dennis, Co-founder & CEO
Fishawack Health

We exited our investment in Fishawack Heath in March 2020 to investment firm Bridgepoint for an undisclosed sum.

A strong heritage in buy & build and healthcare

LDC plays an active role in supporting the buy and build strategies of its portfolio companies, enabling them to drive growth and market share. Between July 2018 and March 2020, LDC-backed businesses across the UK acquired 40 companies with a total enterprise value of over £220m.

LDC has a successful track record in backing the management teams of healthcare businesses, having invested almost £300m in more than 35 healthcare firms. Fishawack joins a long list of successful partnerships including Quantum Pharmaceutical which went through an IPO in 2014, pharmaceutical manufacturer Penn Pharma and leading clinical trials business Synexus. More recently, LDC invested in Ashtons Pharmacy Services.