History and background
The origins of the Group date back to the early part of the twentieth century. Source BioScience plc was listed on the London Stock Exchange’s main market for listed securities in 1999, firstly as Medical Solutions plc, before being renamed as Source BioScience plc in 2008.
Medical Solutions plc was a healthcare diagnostics company. In the period between 1999 and 2016, Source BioScience plc grew through a number of acquisitions across varied business lines.
Source BioScience plc was acquired and delisted in September 2016 through a public to private transaction led by Harwood Capital LLP (“Harwood”) and Continental Investment Partners (“Continental”) for a total consideration of £62.9m (“Take Private Transaction”) to form Source BioScience Limited.
Following the Take Private Transaction in 2016, Harwood and Continental undertook and completed a turn-around plan which included the appointment of Jay LeCoque as Non-Executive Chairman in 2016 and subsequently Executive Chairman in 2017. Over the next few years, the new management team has focused the business on high margin core services, simplified the operations of the Group, and exited a number of unprofitable and non-core operations.
The new management team also focused on building margins and efficiency improvements across the remaining three core and high growth potential business units of Healthcare Diagnostics, Genomics and Stability Storage. The new management team also focused on building margins, seeking efficiency improvements and reducing the cost base through the elimination of unnecessary management layers. The Group realigned its commercial focus and invested in its sales force, including revising compensation plans to better incentivise the sales team and secure attractive revenue growth.
Since the Take Private Transaction, the Company has been supported by its principal shareholders to allow sustained investment into its core business units, specifically into:
- Digital Pathology for Cellular Pathology, within the Healthcare Diagnostics business unit. This investment is expected to offer significant future benefits through reduced turnaround times allowing higher throughput, and in the reduction of carriage costs currently incurred in relation to transporting physical slides to and from hospitals and remote consultant pathologists;
- the Genomics division through the investment in the Illumina NovaSeq 6000 platform, allowing the Group to offer far more complex premium NGS services. This has also enabled the Company to establish new relationships with Clinical Diagnostics companies who contract SourceBio’s laboratories to carry out the laboratory testing of new tests, so that they are more likely to become the contract laboratory of choice as these new tests are released to the UK market; and
- the Stability Storage business unit, to expand physical space in Tramore, Ireland and in the US, by relocating the Company’s facility from Los Angeles to a larger site closer to clients, in San Diego.
In March 2020, whilst the Healthcare Diagnostics and Genomics business units were materially impacted by the effects of COVID-19, the Group saw an opportunity to enter the COVID-19 testing market, capitalising on its laboratory facilities already in place, its high accreditation status and the strong contacts it had previously built within the NHS. The Group established a new Infectious Disease Testing business unit, which was able to offer a COVID-19 testing service, with an intake of initial patient samples and generation of revenue starting in May 2020. Since being established, the Company has expanded its laboratory space following a fit-out in July 2020 and has been able to rapidly expand its capacity to respond to greater demand for its COVID-19 testing service.