Lonza has agreed to sell its peptides business and operations in Braine-l’Alleud, Belgium, to The PolyPeptide Group for an undisclosed price, the companies said today.

“The peptides chemical business is a niche business for Lonza, with only limited synergies with other small-molecule technologies,” Marc Funk, COO of Lonza’s Pharma&Biotech segment, said in a statement. “This move will also allow us to fully focus on our many other technologies, which we will continue to develop further.”

The sale includes Lonza’s Braine facility, until now the company’s center for peptide chemical development and manufacturing. Approximately 280 employees are based at the Braine site, which the companies said will provide for PolyPeptide immediate access to additional large-scale capacity in synthesis, purification, and isolation of peptides.

Lonza acquired the Braine peptide business in 2006 from UCB. The companies said the acquisition will not affect ongoing operations at the Braine facility before or after completion of the deal and that PolyPeptide will harmonize the site’s procedures with those at its other sites in coming months.

The Braine facility and its capabilities are expected to complement the buyer’s portfolio of late-stage products, the companies said, as well as offer opportunities for synergies and continued growth for Swedish-based PolyPeptide, a contract manufacturing organization for peptides and peptide related molecules.

“With this acquisition we will be expanding our capacity to meet the needs of customers who demand the highest-quality products with the most robust, scalable, and cost-efficient peptide manufacturing processes at every scale,” PolyPeptide Group CEO Jane Salik stated.

Following the acquisition from Lonza, PolyPeptide Group will employ close to 800 people worldwide with GMP facilities in San Diego and Torrance, CA, as well as in Strasbourg, France, Ambernath, India, and Malmo, Sweden, as well as the Braine site.

Lonza said it will book a noncash-related write-off of CHF 44 million ($43.6 million) in the second half of 2016, then book a noncash currency translation impact at the closing of the transaction.

The agreement is expected to close in coming weeks, subject to customary closing conditions, the companies said.

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