Cypress, California and San Francisco – January 10, 2012 – West Coast Clinical Trials, LLC (WCCT), a contract research organization (CRO) supporting early phase biopharmaceutical and device development, today announced it has received a substantial equity investment from Housatonic Partners, a $1 billion San Francisco-based private equity firm with expertise in the healthcare and pharmaceutical services markets. Terms of the investment were not disclosed.
WCCT Global specializes in complex Phase I-IIa special population studies, which assess a drug’s efficacy and dosage requirements within a particular subset of a larger population. The company has extensive expertise in protocol design, volunteer enrollment, and management of ethno-bridging, thorough QTc (important cardiac safety parameter), respiratory, infectious disease, pediatric, post-menopausal and renal trials.
Mark Hilderbrand, Managing Director of Housatonic, said, “Thanks to Founder and CEO Dr. Kenneth Kim and the management team, WCCT Global is well positioned for continued growth. They have grown this business annually, even through the difficult and turbulent economy of the last three years. This impressive accomplishment gives us confidence that this team is the right one to guide the company through its next stage of growth and development.”
Added Hilderbrand, “We also are pleased to announce that Ken will assume the role of Chairman of the Board in addition to CEO. We look forward to working with WCCT Global on its global expansion plans.”
Said Dr. Kim, “Support from Housatonic will enable us to more rapidly achieve our goal of becoming a full-service provider of early stage R&D services to internationally recognized pharmaceutical and device manufacturers. Given our future expansion plans, we have renamed the company WCCT Global and appointed a Board of Directors. Our management team is looking forward to working with Housatonic and our stellar Board to build a premier early drug development CRO that will serve biotechs and pharma companies worldwide.”
The newly formed WCCT Global Board of Directors includes the following people:
Dr. Kenneth Kim, MD, Chairman, Founder and CEO, WCCT Global
Dr. Kim is the founder and CEO of West Coast Clinical Trials, LLC (now WCCT Global). He has been a principal, sub-investigator, or medical safety officer in over 400 phase 1 trials and worked as a consultant to Pharma and regulators worldwide on drug development and study design strategies in the areas of ethnobridging, cardiac safety, and pediatric trial study programs. Dr. Kim completed his undergraduate and medical training at Harvard University, and his internal medicine and allergy/immunology fellowship at UCLA. He is board certified in both internal medicine and allergy/immunology and is on the clinical faculty at UCLA.
Craig Albright has been an operating executive in several healthcare industry sectors and active in the healthcare private equity community for nearly two decades. He has served as CEO of Gentiae Clinical Research and Free & Clear, Inc., and as interim CEO of NVision, Inc. Albright also serves on the Board of Directors of U.S. HealthWorks, Inc.
Mark Hilderbrand has been a Managing Director at Housatonic Partners since 2006 and has more than 16 years of experience in private equity. Prior to Housatonic, he was a General Partner at Onset Ventures and worked at Summit Partners, where he focused on recapitalizations and buyouts of high-growth technology and services businesses.
Helen Kim currently serves on the Board of Directors at Sunesis Pharmaceuticals and at ImmunoCellular Therapeutics. She also serves as the Chief Business Officer of NGM Biopharmaceuticals, a privately held drug discovery company. Previously, Kim was President and CEO of Kosan Biosciences Inc., where she restructured and repositioned the company prior to its acquisition by Bristol-Myers Squibb.
Bill Taaffe retired from ICON Clinical Research in June 2011 after 40 years in the pharmaceutical and CRO industry. He was one of the founding members of ICON, PLC where he held the position of President and Chief Executive Officer, North America. Prior to ICON, Taaffe spent two years with Circa Pharmaceuticals, two years with Bioresearch and 18 years with The Institute of Clinical Pharmacology where he served as Chief Executive Officer, USA.
About WCCT Global
WCCT Global is a global provider of outsourced early drug development services to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries. As a drug development partner, WCCT Global partners with domestic and foreign innovator companies who need regulatory, program management, and strategic consulting support from First-in-Man thru the proof of concept stage with an emphasis on overseeing and executing on trials in special disease populations, ethnobridging volunteers, and cardiac safety studies. Visit WCCT Global on the web at http://www.wcctglobal.com.
Housatonic Partners is a private equity investment firm founded in 1994 with $1 billion in capital under management. The firm focuses on buyouts and recapitalizations of rapidly growing, profitable service businesses with highly recurring revenue. In partnership with exceptional management, Housatonic has led investments in more than 60 small to mid-sized companies. Visit Housatonic on the web at http://www.housatonicpartners.com.
Contact for WCCT Global
Executive Director, Business Development
Contact for Housatonic