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ImmunoPrecise Antibodies’ chairman sets out ambitious growth plans after it wraps up its latest deal

IPA wants to emulate the success of Invitrogen, which became Life Technologies before being taken over by Thermo Fisher for US$13.6bn..

The business provides custom antibody development and production services and protein expression for drugs R&D

In a major statement of intent, ImmunoPrecise Antibodies Ltd (CVE:IPA) last week said it was buying ModiQuest Research – a deal that’s expected to immediately enhance earnings.

At almost C$11mln, it is the largest of three recent transactions and is part of a roll-up strategy designed to create a significant new force in research tools used by drugs developers.

Emulate the success of Invitrogen ..

IPA wants to emulate the success of Invitrogen, which became Life Technologies before being taken over by Thermo Fisher for US$13.6bn.

Invitrogen’s bedrock business was selling kits for molecular cloning, but a series of well-judged acquisitions transformed it into the go-to supplier to the biotechnology industry.

IPA, which has been around for 25 years but only listed on the Toronto Venture Exchange a year ago, is at the start of a similar journey.

Before we delve further into strategy, it’s worth understanding what the company does and the backdrop against which it is working.

The business as it stands today provides custom antibody development and production services and protein Expression for drugs R&D.

Its customers tend to be pharma and biotech companies as well as non-profit research; so universities, medical charities and grant-funded collaborations.

IPA might get involved initially with a “test, or demonstration, or feasibility analysis”, says chairman James Kuo. That may then lead to a contract or contracts that could run for several years.

In high demand …

Its services are in high demand, given the changes in the multi-billion dollar drugs business over the last decade.

There has been a shift from the screening of traditional small-molecule chemical pharmaceuticals to bespoke biologicals, many of which are monoclonal antibodies (MABs) designed to safely and effectively tackle cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and even psoriasis.

In the US, insurers have shown a willingness to pay for the treatments, which tend to be quite expensive, while patients are demanding best-in-class biologicals that are highly targeted for grievous diseases and generally less toxic.

“The industry has been completely transformed in the last ten years,” says IPA chairman Kuo.

“The focus on small molecule pharmaceuticals for chronic diseases of aging such as hypertension and hyperlipidemias has shifted towards medications that have immuno-biology at their core.

“Now you look at the top selling drugs and they are biologicals – humanized monoclonal antibodies are the mainstay.”

A thriving sector …

Servicing this large and thriving sector could potentially be a very lucrative line of business.

At the moment the monoclonal antibody research tools space is fragmented with scores of small companies providing a myriad of different services.

Big pharma, by contrast, is crying out for a one-stop shop that caters for the majority of its needs.

Management at Invitrogen recognised this when it set out on its epic growth journey in the early 1990s, and IPA’s team think the same demand exists within the monoclonal antibody space.

The opportunities are there to provide the scale, says Kuo.

“There are mom and pop businesses and small companies that have hit a ceiling for growth that might be amenable to be bought for a fair price,” he reveals.

“There are acquisitions in Europe and the US and a few other places too.”

ModiQuest, a specialist in generating MABs, adds significantly to the size of IPA and broadens its footprint in Europe, building on the deals to acquire Netherlands-based U-Protein Express, and QVQ.

There are economies of scale that come with rolling up businesses in this way as well as cross-selling opportunities and other synergies. Value is also created by adding significant new intellectual property to the portfolio.

Working on several deals..

Kuo says the company is working on several deals at any one time and there’s a healthy pipeline of future opportunities.

Investors are supportive of the buy-and-build strategy and the IPA chairman is certain they will be willing to fund the right acquisitions when they come along.

Kuo likens the company’s approach to that of private equity (PE), which enters an industry sector via a series of deals to own that particular area of business.

There are some obvious differences between PE and a company like IPA. For PE it is about financial engineering and the ability to service debt while paying private equity management fees.

These funds then tend to be run by accountants and analysts – which may work if you are selling pots and pans but doesn’t work so well in a specialist area such as research tools.

industry expertise …

IPA has industry expertise in abundance, starting with Kuo, who has led a number of biotechs, worked in big pharma and headed a venture capital fund.

Chief executive Robert Beecroft, businessman and entrepreneur Guy Champagne and fellow directors Greg Smith and Thomas D’Orazio have similarly impressive resumes.

“We have the people who can look at how good and competitive a technology is and make a decision as to whether we might be overpaying,” Kuo explains.

Those who have tracked the company since its IPO last December, will know it has been through a management a shake-up that saw chairman Kuo become interim president.

The press release refers to it as a “re-alignment” and Kuo sketches in a little more detail: “This was not about personalities; the board has very high expectations for the growth trajectory of the company and it didn’t feel they were being met.”

So just what are those expectations and how quickly can IPA become a company of scale?

“I don’t think a business is worth doing unless it has US$1bn potential in a reasonably short period of time, say two years,” explains Kuo.

“I think we are going to succeed and everyone on the team has a similar feeling.”

Proactive Investors UK: ImmunoPrecise Antibodies’ chairman sets out ambitious growth plans after it wraps up its latest deal

ImmunoPrecise to Acquire ModiQuest Research BV

VICTORIADec. 7, 2017 /PRNewswire/ – IMMUNOPRECISE ANTIBODIES LTD. (the “Company”) (TSX VENTURE: IPA)(OTC PINK: IPATF) announces that it has signed a binding letter of intent with ModiQuest Research BV (“ModiQuest“) whereby the Company has agreed to acquire all of the issued and outstanding shares of ModiQuest (the “Transaction“).

The Transaction continues to realize on the Board’s commitment to grow globally through strategic acquisitions. It allows IPA to become a single source provider of services across the full antibody discovery value chain (antigen design, hit generation, lead selection, lead optimization and lead characterization) and to offer the full spectrum of antibody production methodologies (library based technologies, hybridoma methods, transgenic animal based platforms and single B cell based technology). Furthermore, the acquisition enhances the Company’s capacity for generating human antibodies.

“In acquiring ModiQuest Research B.V., IPA becomes a leading integrated antibody solutions company with global reach,” said Dr. James Kuo, Chairman, Interim President of the Company.


ModiQuest is a privately held company based in Oss, The Netherlands that specializes in the generation of monoclonal antibodies against difficult target antigens. ModiQuest applies proprietary technologies to all aspects of the antibody discovery process in research and development, diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Using its proprietary ModiFuse™ (hybridoma electrofusion), ModiSelect™ (B-cell selection) and ModiPhage™ (phage display) technologies, ModiQuest can generate very large panels of monoclonal antibodies from various backgrounds including mouse, rat, rabbit, chicken, llama and human, as well as transgenic animals harboring the human antibody gene repertoire. ModiQuest serves clients in Europe, the US, Asia and Russia. During its year-ended 2016, ModiQuest had revenues of €2,009,374 (CAD $3,037,249) and earnings of €671,799 (CAD $1,015,451).

The Transaction is accretive in both revenue and earnings and brings additional scientific and management capacity.


Brisio Innovations Announces Resignation and Appointment of Directors

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA / TheNewswire / December 4, 2017 — Brisio Innovations Inc. (CSE: BZI) (PINKSHEETS: NTCEF) (the “Company”) announces that Steven Vestergaard has resigned from the Board of Directors, and Mr. Kristaps Ronka was appointed to the Board of Directors effective December 1.

Kristaps Ronka is an entrepreneur, investor and advisor. Kristaps co-founded AdParlor in 2007, a Toronto-based bootstrapped company that in 4 years become the leader in handling large Facebook Ad campaigns reaching a $100 million run rate. In 2011, Kristaps was named in Inc.’s “Top 30 under 30” most promising young entrepreneurs for disrupting the industry with a visionary approach. AdParlor was acquired in 2011.

Kristaps has since focused on advising and backing start-up companies that are solving important problems and building disruptive technologies from transportation to medicine. His extensive knowledge of business management, new technologies and his network of established contacts will be a valued contribution to the Brisio management team.

Paul Andreola, Brisio CEO states “We welcome Kristaps to the Brisio team. With significant recent developments in applied science such as artificial intelligence and blockchain his extensive knowledge of new and innovative technologies will be put to good use as we continue to evaluate a variety of new investment opportunities.”

Brisio wishes to thank Mr. Vestergaard for his contribution to the Company and wishes him the very best in his future endeavours.

Brisio Innovations Inc.
Paul Andreola

President, CEO and Director
(604) 644-0072

Lite Access Signs Agreement with Carillion Telent to Support Openreach (BT) FTTP Rollout in Wales

VANCOUVERNov. 14, 2017 /PRNewswire/ – LITE ACCESS TECHNOLOGIES INC. (the “Company”) (TSX VENTURE: LTE)(OTC PINK: LTCCF), a world leader in fibre optic products and advanced installation methodologies, is pleased to announce that it has signed a contract with Carillion telent to help support and deliver Openreach Superfast Cymru fibre rollout in Wales. Openreach is a functional division of telecommunications company BT Group (“BT”) and services, supports and maintains the wiring, fibres, and connections which link millions of homes and businesses throughout the UK to their communication providers’ networks.

Carillion telent is one of the United Kingdom’s leading network installation businesses and Openreach’s main delivery partner for the management, maintenance and upgrading of BT’s fibre broadband network. Carillion is dedicated to providing and transforming the way support is delivered to Openreach and has been engaging directly with the sub contractors who provide the service to carry out the civils work. Carillion telent has rationalised Openreach’s supply chain, from five regional suppliers to Carillion telent as the single national service provider.

Following Lite Access’ successful involvement and proven ability to meet and exceed project requirements on a fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) network installation project for a major UK telecom service provider in Wrexham (see press release dated October 19, 2017), the Company was asked to ramp up and provide additional teams to carry out similar works for Carillion telent working on behalf of Openreach. The scope of work primarily encompasses Lite Access’ innovative FTTP installation as part of Carillion telent’s £1.5 billion engineer deal with Openreach (BT) for England and Wales announced in February 2017 and will also allow Lite Access to diversify into and demonstrate the Company’s expertise in all aspects of telecoms work activities.

“We look forward to working with Carillion telent to support Openreach in delivering its objectives for further enhancing the services it provides for its customers,” stated Mike Plotnikoff, CEO of Lite Access. “The UK is a critical market for Lite Access and our strategic partnership with Carillion telent is a transformational event for our Company.”

Mr. Plotnikoff continued, “This is further affirmation of our operational accomplishments with yet another prime contractor in the UK harnessing our world leading fibre installation methodologies. We have just scratched the surface of the opportunity in the UK and I’m confident in our market leading technology to successfully unlock the next chapter of growth for Lite Access.”

Home Hardware Expands Pioneering’s SmartBurner Offering to Meet Growing Consumer Demand in Canada

MISSISSAUGA, ONTARIO–(Marketwired – Nov. 2, 2017) – Pioneering Technology Corp. (TSX VENTURE:PTE)(OTC PINK:PTEFF), (“Pioneering”), North America’s leader in cooking fire prevention technology and products is pleased to announce that Home Hardware has expanded its SmartBurner offering by adding a new product SKU to its current offering. This additional listing will help meet the increased consumer demand for this important cooking fire prevention product. The new SmartBurner SKU will now be available at Home Hardware’s 1,100 retail stores and building centers across Canada.

SmartBurner was originally listed with Home Hardware in November 2014. As awareness for this innovative, one of a kind solution, has increased so too has consumer demand resulting in significant sales growth and ordering patterns, which has prompted this expansion of Home Hardware’s SmartBurner product offering.

Pioneering CEO Kevin Callahan said of the announcement: “We are very happy with the SmartBurner’s growing sales performance at Home Hardware and even happier to announce that with this expanded product offering we can better meet the growing demand from Canadian homeowners. By providing consumers with what they need, when they need it, we can really help people protect themselves and their property from the number one cause of home fires – cooking.”

Cooking is the leading cause of home fires and home-fire injuries. Pioneering’s SmartBurner with its patented temperature limiting control (TLC) technology helps prevent cooking fires before they start. This technology has been installed on over 250,000 multi-residential stoves and cooktops throughout North America, and counting, without a single reported cooking fire.

Callahan went on to say, “This is very good news and Home Hardware has been a great learning and proving ground as we now begin looking at future expansion to consumer retail in the United States”.

Renoworks Brings Leading Visualization Technology to Several Top 20 US Homebuilders Using Renoworks SDK™

Renoworks SDK™ facilitates new market segment in the new home construction industry

CALGARYOct. 3, 2017 /CNW/ – Renoworks Software Inc. (TSXV: RW)(PINK SHEETS: RWOKF)(“Renoworks” or the “Company”), a leading provider of digital home imaging software and web solutions for new home construction and home renovation markets, is pleased to announce the adoption of its leading visualization platform with several top US Homebuilders.  Renoworks SDKTM is a Software-Development-Kit (SDK) allowing technology companies, digital marketing agencies and other partners servicing the home remodeling and builder markets to create rich, interactive applications using the Renoworks visualization platform.

“We are very pleased with the success of our leading visualization technology platform with several of the nation’s largest homebuilders,” stated Doug Vickerson, CEO of Renoworks.  “The introduction of our technology beyond our traditional remodeling clients into the homebuilder segment is one of our Company’s key strategic growth imperatives.  Growing demand from homebuilders offers an exceptional opportunity for us to rapidly penetrate this untapped market and grow revenue through building a significant presence in the new home construction industry.”

“This is significant for Renoworks in that it also positively boosts two of our other key business units;  Design Services and Enterprise,” Vickerson further stated. “Our SDKTM technology partners utilize our growing team of Design Service professionals to prepare room scenes for builders. For our Enterprise business, more manufacturers continue to see the benefit in having digital product libraries on the Renoworks platform because of the increased exposure.  There is definitely a need in the new home construction industry to make design option decisions easier for the homeowner and the Renoworks Platform allows for just that.”  “We are excited about the new home construction industry as it is showing positive growth signs that Renoworks is taking advantage of,” Vickerson concluded.

In the new home construction industry, single-family construction is on the increase. Housing markets continued to strengthen in 2017, with new and existing home sales, prices and construction levels on the rise.  Single-family construction continued to pick up pace over the past year, with total starts ticking up from 1.11 million units in 2015 to 1.17 million units in 2016 and for the first time since 2005, single-family construction drove last year’s growth, increasing 9.4% to 781,600 units.  Despite these gains, single-family construction, traditionally the largest source of residential investment remains well below historical levels.  Key housing market indicators remained largely positive in 2016 through to 2017.  For example, with permitting increasing in 70 of the nation’s 100 largest metro markets last year, the overall trends are generally positive and the outlook for housing construction activity is encouraging.1

The State of the Nation’s Housing 2017, Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, online: Harvard Ichs State of the nations housing 2017

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