Blackstone to sell Catalent to Frazier Healthcare, sources say

All or part of Catalent Pharma Solutions, which has a big facility in Northeast Philadelphia and another in Mount Laurel, is about to be sold by the Blackstone Group to Frazier Healthcare, a West Coast-based venture capital firm, sources said.

Catalent contracts with pharmaceutical companies to manufacture and package medicine.

Neither the price of the transaction nor whether Blackstone is selling all or part of Catalent could be determined Wednesday afternoon.

A Frazier Healthcare spokesperson declined to comment when asked about the sale and how it might impact operations in this area.

A Blackstone spokesman declined comment.

A call and email to a spokesperson for Catalent were not returned.

Catalent's headquarters is in Somerset, N.J. Catalent's 427,908-square foot packaging facility on Red Lion Road in Northeast Philadelphia is the largest of the company's facilities, which touch five continents. Catalent also has a facility at that location is for development and clinical services.

Catalent has 8,200 employees, with 3,250 in North America. The Philadelphia employment numbers were not available.

In 2007, Blackstone spent about $3.3 billion to acquire Pharmaceutical Technologies and Services (PTS) from Cardinal Health, and renamed it Catalent Pharma Solutions. But the company has struggled in recent years to be profitable.

In the fiscal year ending June 30, 2011, the company reported in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing that it had a net loss of $54 million, though that was an improvement over the $289 million loss that was reported in June 2010.

In the quarter ending March 31 of this year, Catalent reported a loss of $20.8 million and a nine-month loss of $69.7 million, according to its SEC filing.