Sigma-Aldrich Acquires Ultrafine to Enhance Fine Chemicals Capabilities


Sigma-Aldrich Corporation announced that it has enhanced its fine chemicals capabilities to serve pharmaceutical and biotech manufacturers through its acquisition of Ultrafine. Founded in 1984 and institutionally backed, Ultrafine is located in Manchester, U.K. and is a leading supplier of contract chemistry services for all phases of drug development to customers world-wide, with capabilities ranging from fundamental research to GMP manufacturing, including the ability to supply active ingredients for clinical trials. Ultrafine's Life Science catalogue also currently offers more than 130 products which enable its customers to expedite drug discovery and development.

The acquisition is expected to add approximately one percent to Sigma-Aldrich's otherwise reportable growth in the remaining quarters of 2004. Acquired operations are expected to meet or exceed the Company's targets of 10% annualized, local currency growth over the next several years and to be accretive to earnings in and after 2004, with no initial charges. Terms of the purchase, which were not disclosed, were paid in cash.

Commenting on the acquisition, Frank Wicks, President, Sigma-Aldrich Fine Chemicals said, "Ultrafine reinforces and enhances our Fine Chemicals capabilities and is an ideal complement to our existing cGMP process development and manufacturing facilities in the UK, USA and Switzerland. Combining Ultrafine's medicinal chemistry skills and ability to rapidly provide preclinical and early clinical phase GMP material with Sigma-Aldrich Fine Chemicals' capabilities in process development and scale up, we are now better positioned to meet the demands of the pharmaceutical industry for high quality products and services through all stages of development, enabling customers to get their new products to market more quickly."

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