West Pharmaceutical Services Inc. plans to expand in drug-injection components by acquiring a majority stake in Medimop Medical Projects Ltd. of Ra'anana, Israel.
West makes stoppers, vial seals, closures and disposable parts for syringe, intravenous and blood-collection systems. It also makes products such as closures for personal-care, food and beverage markets. The publicly traded company in Lionville, Pa., had first-quarter sales of $149.5 million.
Medimop designs systems for reconstituting, transferring and administering drugs. Its sales will run to about $8 million for the second half of the year. Medimop's stake in drug-reconstitution systems is a key attraction, said Steven Ellers, West Pharmaceutical president and chief operating officer.
Many new drugs made through biotechnology are supplied as freeze-dried powders that need to be reconstituted with water at the point of use. Medimop's Mixject system complements West Pharmaceutical's Clip'n'Ject product for those applications.
Ellers said drug packaging and delivery systems are increasingly sophisticated. Medimop's experience is in systems design and service; it relies on outside suppliers to make its components. West probably will make some Medimop products at its own locations, especially when customers want two supply sources.
About a dozen West Pharmaceutical plants injection mold plastics. Ellers said major plastics used include thermoplastic elastomers, polystyrene, polypropylene and polyethylene. Most of its plastics operations came with its recent acquisition of Tech Group Inc., a contract manufacturer for health-care and consumer markets based in Scottsdale, Ariz. He said West Pharmaceutical probably has enough injection molding capacity to handle any Medimop molding business it picks up.
More important than press capacity is the ability to design effective tooling and efficient assembly, he added.
West Pharmaceutial agreed to pay $36 million in cash, $4 million in West Pharmaceutical shares and up to $1.8 million in contingent payments for 90 percent of Medimop. Freddy Zinger, Medimop president and founder, will continue to hold the minority stake. The firms expect to complete the deal in the third quarter.