Charles River Laboratories International, Inc. has entered into an agreement to acquire 75% of Vital River, a commercial provider of research models and related services in China, for approximately $27 million. Charles River also has an option to acquire the remaining 25% of Vital River in the future.
With this acquisition, Charles River will provide research models and associated services to the emerging China market for drug discovery and development. The acquisition is expected to close in 1Q13, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.
James C. Foster, chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Charles River Laboratories, said, “We expect demand for research models in China to significantly increase over the next several years as drug development initiatives in academia, government and biopharmaceutical companies expand. Through our acquisition of Vital River, Charles River intends to set the standards for research models in China, the third-largest pharmaceutical market in the world, and play a leading role in this emerging opportunity.”