Bridgepoint told us it has hired JP Morgan and HSBC to look at merger and acquisition prospects.
The firm said LGC had been a ‘very acquisitive company’ with a number of deals since Bridgepoint took control five years ago.
It added JP Morgan and HSBC had previously been confirmed as advisors in the case of an exit but there was no such process and it was ‘premature’ to talk about a sale.
UK media reports said banking sources regarded the appointments as a ‘sure sign’ a sale was being considered and valued LGC at up to £700m.
LGC was acquired by Bridgepoint from LGV Capital in a transaction that valued the business at £257m in 2010.
The company is the UK's designated National Measurement Institute for chemical and biochemical analysis and is the host organisation for the UK's Government Chemist function.
LGC is the co-ordinator of a food authenticity network set up due to one of the recommendations of the Elliot review.
It was also involved in the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) backtracking on a recall of ground cumin because of almond after additional testing.
Results from LGC showed mahaleb was present and not almond protein. Scientists developed a DNA test that, along with mass spectrometry, is able to distinguish between almond and mahaleb.
LGC also develops reference materials to help protect consumers from food fraud.
Variety of work
LGC is a life sciences measurement and testing company, headquartered in South West London, and employing over 2,000 staff who operate out of 22 countries.
It has four divisions: Standards, Genomics, Science and Innovation, and Laboratory and Managed Services, providing reference materials, proficiency testing, genomics and analytical products and services to industries including food and pharmaceutical.
Since 2010, LGC has bought K-Bioscience, a provider of genotyping equipment and services to the agribusiness and pharmaceutical industries; Industrial Analytical in South Africa, a reference materials provider focusing on the natural resources and industrial sectors and Dr Ehrenstorfer, a producer of pesticide and other organic reference materials.
The Government Chemist fulfils two functions, funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) – a statutory and an advisory one.