Borders-based industry veteran Tom Stratford has launched a new pharmaceuticals business with the acquisition of Glasgow's Stirling Anglian Pharmaceuticals.

The deal is backed by private equity firm Apposite Capital, which has 12 healthcare businesses in its European portfolio of commercial stage companies. The acquisition gives Mr Stratford's Kelso Pharma an initial UK platform for further acquisitions, product in-licensing and geographic expansion within Europe. 

The former ProStrakan and Kyowa Kirin International (KKI) chief executive is joined at Kelso by Allan Watson, previously chief financial officer at KKI, and former KKI general counsel Andrew McLean. 

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"Our aim is to enhance value for the healthcare system by providing branded medicines that improve the lives of patients in a cost-effective and ethical way," Mr Stratford said.

“Stirling Anglian’s business is a perfect fit with that vision and with Apposite Capital’s financial support it provides us with a UK platform from which to grow, not just in the UK but elsewhere, as we build a pan-European specialty pharma business."

Apposite managing partner, Sam Gray, said: “Given its growth profile, the acquisition of Stirling Anglian represents an attractive first entry point into the UK market and we share the ambition of the team to create a significant pan-European business with a focus on innovative affordable medicines.”