Linden acquires Watchung’s Evolution Research Group

Chicago-based Linden Capital Partners, a health care private equity firm, announced Wednesday it has completed its acquisition of Watchung-based Evolution Research Group LLC.

ERG is an independent clinical research site serving pharmaceutical companies and research organizations. It is currently comprised of 21 business units (10 wholly-owned and 11 affiliated) with over 40 principal investigators. ERG has completed more than 5,000 clinical trials, has 380 beds across the U.S. and provides access to more than 215,000 special population subjects and volunteers to the industry.

“Over the last several years, ERG has expanded and diversified within neuroscience and beyond, becoming a leading clinical research site business. ERG remains focused on continuous quality improvement and exploring ways to better serve our research subjects and the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and CRO industries. We are excited to partner with Linden who share our vision to further build upon, invest in, and accelerate the growth of ERG. Linden’s deep expertise, insight and network in the pharmaceutical services sector, together with their partnership mindset and focus on quality, make them an ideal partner for ERG,” said Lori Wright, CEO of ERG.

“Lori and the entire management team have built a tremendous business in ERG. Their strong track record of operational excellence, quality, and customer service, together with a rare skill set in managing complex patient populations, makes ERG a unique and highly value-added clinical research site business.” said Michael Farah, partner at Linden.

“Our investment in ERG further builds upon our pharmaceutical services sub-sector strategy and we look forward to partnering with management to continue to grow ERG both organically and through acquisition,” he said.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal advisor to Linden. Harris Williams & Co., Edgemont Capital Partners and Ice Miller LLP served as financial and legal advisors to ERG. Golub Capital provided senior debt financing for the deal.