RC Capital Completes Growth Recapitalization of CNS-Focused CRO, Cognitive Research Corporation
RC Capital, a healthcare-focused private equity firm investing growth capital in innovative healthcare companies, announced today that it has closed a growth and recapitalization investment in Cognitive Research Corporation (“CRC” or the “Company”), a leading, full-service, therapeutically-focused Contract Research Organization (CRO) specializing in the Central Nervous System (CNS) sector.
RCC invested growth capital and partnered with management to acquire a majority stake in St. Petersburg, Florida-based CRC. The transaction enables CRC to accelerate its business development efforts, expand the scope of services to better serve its growing customer base, and build out its presence globally, all to meet the incredible demand the Company has experienced over the last few years. Founders Dr. Tom Hochadel and Dr. Gary Kay, along with newly appointed CEO, C.G. Gillooly, and other members of management will retain a significant ownership position in the Company.
Founded in 2006 by Dr. Tom Hochadel, Dr. Gary Kay, Dr. Thomas Crook, and Steven Horohonich, CRC is a full-service contract research organization and technology company that specializes in Central Nervous System (CNS) product development for the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries. CRC works with sponsors, specialized clinical trial sites, and CNS experts to bring new drugs through rigorous testing to market.
“RCC’s expertise and network will bring additional resources and business development opportunities to CRC, and this growth-oriented transaction will help us accelerate the execution of our growing backlog,” says co-founder Tom Hochadel. “We are thrilled to be partnering with RC Capital to help CRC capitalize on the massive need from the pharma and biotech market for specialized clinical trial partners to help bring safe and efficacious CNS therapies to market,” adds co-founder Gary Kay.
“We are excited to partner with RC Capital to implement a number of strategic initiatives, including further expansion of our services, operations and key hires in the U.S. and globally,” says C.G. “Chip” Gillooly, CEO. “We met with many premier private equity firms who operate in the life sciences services space and chose RC Capital because of their impressive track record of working successfully with management of growth-stage healthcare companies to better meet the needs of the markets they serve. We look forward to working with the RCC team to continue to build on the strong 17-year heritage established by CRC’s founders. Pharma sponsors, particularly smaller pharma and biotech sponsors are hungry for a CRO partner who understands the unique needs and nuances of their business model and can translate that into world-class customer service and trial guidance. This transaction will further enable us to build a new-age CRO.”
“RC Capital seeks to partner with founders and management teams of high-growth companies like CRC that deliver enduring value to the life science and healthcare industries, and ultimately, better health outcomes for patients,” says Rob Heimann, Managing Partner at RC Capital. “With a 17-year operating history, hundreds of trials managed across 30+ indications, and dozens of NDA submissions in the CNS field, Tom Hochadel, Gary Kay and the CRC team have developed rare and important domain experience in successfully executing clinical trials for pharma sponsors who are endeavoring to bring novel CNS products to market. We look forward to working with Chip and the entire CRC team in their next phase of growth.”
“We are in a new age of biotech innovation in the CNS field, and it’s never been more needed,” says Patrick Dunnigan, Partner at RC Capital. “After decades with limited innovation from pharma, meaningful progress has recently been made in understanding the structure and functions of the Central Nervous System, leading to significant investments in the discovery of new drugs for the treatment of CNS disorders. Neurodegenerative disorders and mental health disorders, which take a considerable toll on society, have received significant focus. We look forward to helping advance CRC’s mission of helping their customers bring important and novel therapies to market for the benefit of patients everywhere.”
Heimann and Dunnigan will join CRC’s board of directors. Additionally, CRC appointed Jeff Williams as Executive Chairman of the Board. Jeff is a seasoned healthcare executive having previously served as CEO of Mindpath Care Centers, a behavioral health business, and Founder and CEO of Clinipace, a biotech-focused CRO.
Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. McGuireWoods LLP provided legal counsel to RCC and Wyrick, Robbins, Yates, and Ponton LLP provided legal counsel to CRC.
About Cognitive Research Corporation
Cognitive Research Corporation’s mission is to support innovative companies developing new medicines and therapies to improve mental health and neurological disorders. As a leading neuroscience clinical research organization (CRO) and cognitive assessment technology company, CRC works with sponsors, specialized clinical trial sites, and CNS experts to bring new drugs through rigorous testing to support FDA submissions and eventual market introduction.
For more information, visit www.cogres.com.