Lead Forensics

Case study

Penn Pharma: Support through the cycle

Seven year partnership helps mid Wales-based pharma manufacturer stabilise, open a new facility and return to growth.

Penn Pharma provides a selection of Contract Development and Manufacturing Organisation services.

Deal type
  • Secondary buyout
Deal value


Exit type
  • Trade sale
Exit date

August 2014

Exit value


The Team
LDC Team

Penn Pharma provides a selection of Contract Development and Manufacturing Organisation (CDMO) services to its high-quality customer base, comprising some of the world’s leading pharmaceutical and biotech companies.

Established in 1979, Penn undertakes contract manufacturing for commercial and clinical trials and is one of the few companies globally with the skills and facilities to produce highly potent products in both small and large commercial quantities.

Experienced support

The management team partnered with LDC in 2007 as we invested £33m in a secondary buyout, with the goal of helping it achieve its growth strategy through business improvement. This involved collaboration with an experienced Non-Executive Director who, along with our expertise, helped Penn’s management team stabilise the business through the recession and build strong foundations for organic growth.

With additional investment from LDC, Penn continued to grow as it opened a new £14m, 15,000 sq. ft, purpose-built manufacturing facility. Thanks to LDC’s support, the investment in cutting-edge technology gave Penn a clear strategic advantage over its rivals.

orange quote mark
LDC’s support and strategic input to our business has been invaluable, and ensures that we are now well placed to embark upon the next stage of our growth plans.”
Dr Richard Yarwood, Former Chief Executive
Penn Pharmaceuticals

Patient capital

During the seven years that LDC backed the business, Penn saw annual turnover rise from £17m in 2007 to over £30m in 2014, and the workforce grew to 300-strong, a 47 per cent increase since our original investment.

We completed a trade sale in 2014 to Packaging Co-ordinators Inc, a USA-headquartered global packaging services provider in a £127m deal, delivering a 2.9x return.


Exit Management Team of the Year

Penn Pharma – Wales BVCA Management Team Awards

Venture Capital Deal of the Year

Penn Pharma – Insider Wales Dealmaker Awards