“We have successfully supported Unilabs in a rapidly changing market for 10 years”

bertrand_pivin_recadre_pour_site_apax-partners_bd_couleur-avril2016sergeverglas-002Over the last 10 years, we have supported Unilabs in the rapidly changing medical laboratory market, as it endeavoured to reduce healthcare costs. Medical analysis is the cornerstone of good healthcare. With medical diagnostics becoming increasingly precise, treatment can be better targeted and costs reduced. As a logical consequence, the volume of medical analyses has significantly increased in recent years.

We have consolidated the market, supporting 70 build-ups of independent laboratories and regional chains, including c. 50 in France. We have also helped Unilabs improve its operational efficiency. For instance, the company has specialized certain sites and differentiated its collection centres from its processing centres. Unilabs has also invested massively in equipment that improves the quality and efficiency of diagnostics. The strategy has paid off: in 10 years the company’s revenues and EBITDA have increased by a factor of 3.5. Today, as we sell our investment, we are very pleased with what we have accomplished together.

The strategy succeeded because we had a very positive relationship with the company’s executives. I strongly believe that 80% of the success of an investment derives from the quality of the relationship between the investment team and the management team. Jos Lamers, Unilabs’ CEO, is a man who says what he does and does what he says. He has set ambitious goals and stuck to them, encouraged transparency and rewarded success. These values are all akin to those of Apax Partners. We wish Jos and his colleagues at Unilabs every success in the future.

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Apax Talks is a digital magazine aimed at company managers. It presents growth levers for SMEs, with a focus on TMT, consumer, healthcare and services sectors.