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Caprion Becomes CellCarta: CRO Rebrands After Banner Year for Acquisitions and Partnerships

Caprion Becomes CellCarta: CRO Rebrands After Banner Year for Acquisitions and Partnerships

While Caprion-HistoGeneX’s name change to CellCarta kicked off 2021, it followed a trend of life science companies rebranding that started last year.

Montreal, Canada-based Caprion Biosciences announced last week that the clinical research organization (CRO) will rebrand as CellCarta. The move follows the 2019 merger between Caprion and HistoGeneX, a Belgian histopathology and genomics lab.

The name CellCarta was inspired by the Magna Carta, the iconic political document issued by King John of England in the 13th century. According to the company, they took inspiration from the document as “a symbol of individual liberty,” which they say echoes CellCarta’s mission of accelerating the development of personalized medicine.

“We wanted to create a brand that is unique in the market, relevant to our clients and inspiring to our employees around the world,” said Nick Wright, president and COO of CellCarta, in a statement about the rebrand. “CellCarta embodies everything we do, which is about mapping differences between cells and ultimately between individuals, so that our partners can develop better and more targeted therapies.”

In the 18 months since Caprion and HistoGeneX established their partnership, the joint venture has been busy acquiring other CROs to expand their laboratory service offerings in key markets around the world. In early January, Caprion-HistoGeneX announced their acquisition of Clinical Logistics Inc., a Halifax, Canada-based CRO focused on specimen management and logistics; just five days later, a release was issued detailing the company’s acquisition of a histology and immunohistochemistry services provider out of California called Mosaic Laboratories.

“Our mission is to be the global partner of choice for biopharmaceutical companies seeking precision medicine solutions to help ensure a healthier future for us all,” said Martin LeBlanc, CEO of CellCarta. “By uniting our diverse teams of scientists across the world under a common brand identity, we aim to articulate a single message aligned with our shared set of fundamental values focused on scientific excellence, a collaborative mindset and a commitment to deliver high-quality results to our partners. It also further reinforces our commitment to provide our clients with a broad and integrated set of services under a single organization.”

The company worked with Canadian consultancy firm BrandBourg to develop their new brand identity. Caprion previously worked with BrandBourg in 2018 when the CRO was looking to differentiate itself from competitors and expand into international biosciences markets.

While the majority of BrandBourg’s clients fall under the consumer category, and include major food brands like Lactantia, Black Diamond and Dr. Oetker, the Montreal marketing agency has previous experience working with life science companies. Previous projects have included brand updates for digital healthcare company Telus Health and the Montreal Neurological Institute-Hospital (The Neuro), Canada’s largest neurological research facility.

The partnerships established by CellCarta in under a two-year period have allowed them to expand their operation to nine facilities across five countries: Canada, US, Belgium, Australia and China. Backed by Arsenal Capital Partners, a private equity firm focused on middle-market healthcare companies, CellCarta is part of a portfolio including other healthcare companies like Accumen, Certara and Airnov.

“By uniting under a single brand identity, CellCarta is sending a signal that its rapid expansion through acquisitions and organic growth has resulted in a market-leading enterprise that is greater than the sum of its parts,” said David Spaight, executive chairman of CellCarta and an Arsenal operating partner. “The ongoing success of CellCarta exemplifies Arsenal’s ‘Strategic Company Building’ approach that focuses on expanding a company’s solution offering, elevating its market position and compounding its growth.”

While Caprion-HistoGeneX’s name change to CellCarta kicked off 2021, it followed a trend of life science companies rebranding that started last year. AI and machine learning company Bigfinite changed its name to Aizon in October 2020, while WuXiNextCODE, a genomics data company, emerged from its restructuring as Genuity Science in July.