Abcam buys US firm Firefly in £18.5m deal

Joseph Millis
BRITISH biotech firm Abcam yesterday announced that it will buy Firefly BioWorks for £18.5m in cash, adding it expected to meet its full-year revenue target after a 7.7 per cent increase in the first half of its financial year at actual exchange rates.

The firm said that after an “initial period of modest investment”, Firefly was expected to generate “attractive returns in the longer term”. The acquisition of Massachusetts-based Firefly will be funded from Abcam’s existing resources, and is expected to close by the end of the month.

Cambridge-based Abcam said its revenue growth in the half-year to 31 December had been capped by bad exchange rates, and on a constant currency basis it was 13.8 per cent.

Gross margins for the first half were likely to be slightly less than those in the previous year, Abcam said, as it sold a greater proportion of less profitable products.

The company reported revenue growth of 67.2 per cent in China, boosted by the opening of its new office in Shanghai last February. It expects this to moderate as its business there establishes itself.

Abcam shares closed down 4.8 per cent at 456.50p.