Baker McKenzie LLP has advised H.I.G. Capital, a leading global alternative investment firm with $45 billion of equity capital under management, on its acquisition of leading UK pharmaceutical business, Aspire Pharma Ltd.

Established in 2009, Aspire offers a range of medicines, medical devices, diagnostics and over-the-counter products. The business holds leadership positions in urology, ophthalmology, CNS and dermatology, with a highly diversified portfolio of more than 250 products across multiple categories, including branded specialty products and unbranded niche generics. H.I.G., together with the management team, aims to continue Aspire’s strong track record of organic growth and to support new initiatives, such as M&A and international expansion.

Graham Fraser-Pye, Chairman of Aspire remarked, “I am very pleased to welcome H.I.G. as a key investor in the future of Aspire Pharma. Since our foundation in 2009, we have grown rapidly and consistently through our astute strategic choices and extensive development know-how. H.I.G., with its significant financial and geographic reach, will help us maintain our impressive growth trajectory and take Aspire into another exciting phase for its people and customers. We remain committed to the development and supply of innovative products and medicines that offer value to our customers and make a difference to the lives of patients.”

John Harper, Managing Director and Head of the H.I.G. Europe Lower Middle Market LBO team in London, said, “We are delighted to be supporting Graham and his team to further build upon Aspire’s success. The Company’s track record of identifying, developing and launching niche pharmaceutical products, coupled with H.I.G.’s international presence and history of supporting organic and acquisitive growth in its portfolio companies, underpins an exciting next chapter for Aspire.”

Nick O'Grady lead partner of the Baker McKenzie team said, "We are delighted to help H.I.G. Capital complete another exciting and high profile transaction. It has been a pleasure working with the team and this transaction is a perfect example of the kind of investment opportunity our enhanced private equity and leveraged finance offering is well-placed to execute by harnessing Baker McKenzie's exceptional healthcare and pharmaceutical industry expertise."

Justin Hutchinson corporate partner added, "The market for strong healthcare businesses remains extremely active. We offer our congratulations to H.I.G. Capital and all involved on this great transaction."

The Baker McKenzie team was led by banking and finance partners Nick O'Grady and Matt Cox and private equity partner Justin Hutchinson (all London). Support was provided by London corporate associates Patrick Edwards, James Adams, Eric Lim, Naomi Inns, Ayesha Chanda, Kata Szeidovitz and Jerrold Yam and London finance associates Matt Mazenier, Nick Parker, Natalie Lawman. Further expertise was provided by partner Jane Hobson and counsel Els Janssens (healthcare), partner Luis Gomez and associate Anthony Gamble (anti-trust), and partner Alistair Craig and associate Jee Yoon Chung (Tax).

The Aspire Pharma transaction follows on from Baker McKenzie’s recent work for H.I.G. Capital healthcare investments, including advising its portfolio company Vernacare Group on the financing for the acquisition of the Infection Prevention business from Frontier Medical Group and the acquisition of Robinson Healthcare.

The deal closed September 2021.
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