The Halifax Group had three strong exits in 2016, including its sale of Envision Pharma Group, which was a grand slam success. The firm purchased the company for $81.8 million in 2013 and sold it in 2016 for $331.4 million. At the time of Halifax’s investment, Envision’s service lines had an estimated addressable market size of around $1 billion. Driven by the demand for evidence-based marketing information, Envision began to expand its services and software capabilities. Envision’s addressable market in 2015 became more than $20 billion. The purchase came about when Halifax, along with management, completed a carve-out of Envision from Express Scripts Holding Co. (NASDAQ: ESRX). Envision was being sold as a “scientific publications planning” company with little value being assessed to its integrated software capabilities or the fact that it possessed clinical trials data that could be used to position new drugs in an evolving evidence-based marketing environment.
“Drug companies were no longer able to promote drugs without scientific evidence of their capabilities. Envision’s capabilities included collecting and reporting clinical trials data coupled with a software platform to store, deliver and analyze that data. That put it in a prime service provider position as evidence-based marketing became crucial to selling drugs,” said David Dupree, founder and managing partner of Halifax.