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Fortrea updates on Acelyrin and confirms clinical/patient access plan

Posted by on 19 March 2024
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Fortrea saw revenues increase at the end of last year thanks to higher contributions from both its clinical trial and enabling services units.

The contract research organization (CRO) unveiled its results for the final period of 2023 last week, explaining that revenues grew 1.8% to $775.4 million. Its clinical services division – which runs Phase I to IV trials – brought in $709.7 million – up 1.7% year-on-year.

Fortrea’s enabling services unit – parts of which are due to be sold to private equity firm Arsenal Capital Partners for $345 million – generated $65.7 million in the final three months of 2023, which is an increase of 2.8%.

Tom Pike, chairman and CEO, said the increase in Q4 revenue reflected a positive response to Fortrea’s strategy.

“Customers and employees have responded favorably to our patient-inspired purpose and our innovative solutions, combining leading science, technology and people. The planned divestiture of our Patient Access and Endpoint businesses strengthens our focus on Phase I to IIII clinical services.”

Pike also said “2024 is an important year for us to continue demonstrating that we can deliver excellent results for customers while improving the financial results for the medium and longer term.”
Fortrea issued guidance for 2024, predicting that revenue from its ongoing business will be between $3,140 million to $3,205 million. For 2023 revenue was $3,109.0 million, compared to $3,096.1 million for 2022.


Fortrea’s announced its plan to sell Endpoint Clinical and Fortrea Patient Access to Arsenal Capital Partners on March 11.

In a press statement Pike said the divestiture would strengthen its position on clinical development phases I through IV.

“As we sharpen our focus on organically growing as a pure-play CRO, with added financial flexibility […] Arsenal has extensive experience in building businesses that create systematic improvement in health outcomes, and I am confident that Endpoint and Fortrea Patient Access will be able to strengthen their market positions, nurture top-tier talent and invest in new capabilities and resources while delivering solutions that improve patients’ lives.”

The divestiture is expected to be completed in the second quarter.

Acelyrin update

Fortrea also used its earning call to update about a disagreement it had with Acelyrin last year.

Pike told analysts on the call “I do want to describe a GAAP expense in the fourth quarter that was incurred in connection with our ongoing work with a customer, which has been the subject of prior disclosure.

For background, in 2022 a third-party vendor, which is not associated with Fortrea, made a programming error that, when discovered, limited the usefulness of data from two arms of a four-arm trial.

“As we noted in January, our expert independent reviewer determined this was not the fault of Fortrea or our processes. However, we incurred significant incremental costs associated with this rare third-party error. As part of working with the customer, we wrote off certain receivables, discounted some work and provided other consideration as part of a multi-party solution to facilitate ongoing trials.”
He added “I spent time with their CEO. We are excited about the company and wish them well.”


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