Lab Product News
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VWR International sold for $1.65 billion


New York, NY – April 13, 2004 – Private equity firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice says that an investment fund managed by CD&R has purchased VWR International from Merck of Darmstadt, Germany for US$1.65 billion.

Based in West Chester, PA, VWR International, is one of the largest distributors in North America and Europe of scientific supplies to the industrial, pharmaceutical, educational and government markets. The company says it has 5,880 employees worldwide and 2003 revenues of approximately $2.8 billion, of which approximately two thirds are from North America and the remainder from Europe.

“VWR International is an excellent business and the transaction is precisely the kind for which we are well known – a large divestiture of a captive distributor from a major multinational corporation,” says Donald J Gogel, chief executive officer of CD&R. “We believe our operationally focused investment model is particularly well suited in situations where the parent organization has a strong interest in seeing the unit being divested grow and prosper as an independent company.”

VWR International will continue to distribute Merck laboratory products.