June is thought to be the most popular month for weddings, and new beginnings. That wasn’t what sparked the merger of California Cryobank and Cord Blood Registry (CBR) on June 15, but it certainly put marriage and families front and center.
California Cryobank, a portfolio company of Longitude Capital and NovaQuest Capital, is the world’s leading donor sperm and donor egg bank. The private equity firms acquired the company in August 2014 for an undisclosed amount, and less than four years later have sold it to GI Partners in San Francisco. That price was also not disclosed.
In a separate transaction, GI Partners acquired CBR, the world’s largest stem cell collection and storage company, from AMAG Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAG). AMAG acquired the company in June 2015 for $700 million from GTCR. Back in September 2012, GTCR partnered with life sciences executive Geoffrey Crouse to acquire the privately held CBR and to expand the scope of newborn stem cell therapies that may be available to patients and their families.
GI Partners plans to merge the two companies to create a leading life sciences platform, operating as California Cryobank Life Sciences, and continue to expand in the United States and internationally.
Perhaps not-so-coincidentally, Cryo-Cell International, Inc. (NASDAQ: CCEL), a biomedical cryogenic storage company, acquired Cord:Use Cord Blood Bank Inc. earlier in June. Cord:Use is a public cord blood bank that collects, processes, stores and delivers the stem cells found in cord blood to transplant centers worldwide.
The $14 million price consists of $10.5 million in cash, using about $3 million in cash on hand and $7.5 million from a term loan with Texas Capital Bank. Cryo-Cell will also issue 470,430 shares of stock to fund the purchase.
Cryo-Cell and Cord:Use expect to provide the highest quality cord blood banking services. Founded in 1989, Cryo-Cell has grown through acquisitions. In October 2001, it acquired Cryo-Cell Europe NV, a Netherlands-based storage company for umbilical cord blood cells, for $13.5 million.
In May 2002, it bought MainGen GmbH from Asta Medica, a subsidiary of Degussa AG. MainGen specialized in the processing, preparation and expansion of adult stem cells from cord blood and bone marrow for clinical applications. MainGen also developed techniques for the in vitro transduction of certain cells for use in gene therapy.
As for weddings, June has lost its crown as the most popular wedding month. In the United States, more and more couples have chosen an autumn wedding date in the past 15 years.