Mubadala to invest in German ophthalmic lens manufacturer Rodenstock

Abu Dhabi’s strategic investment arm is taking a minority stake in Rodenstock along with funds advised by British equity firm Apax Partners

MUNICH, GERMANY - JANUARY 15: An employee shows a pair of sports glasses from Rodenstock's new ProAct line at the Rodenstock booth during the Rodenstock Sports Talk at opti 2016 tradeshow at Messe Muenchen on January 15, 2016 in Munich, Germany.  (Photo by Philipp Guelland/Getty Images)
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Mubadala Investment Company is investing in Germany’s Rodenstock Group, an ophthalmic lens manufacturer, as it expands its global medical technology and life sciences portfolio.

Mubadala said on Sunday that it would take a minority stake in Rodenstock along with funds advised by British equity firm Apax Partners.

It did not disclose the size of the stake or financial details of the deal, which is subject to regulatory approvals and expected to close in the middle of this year.

Rodenstock has a “reputation for innovation and a consistent focus on offering a differentiated customer proposition”, said Mubadala's head of life sciences Camilla Languille.

“We see its highly customised biometric lenses as only one part of its growing pipeline of proprietary technology that will enable significant future growth.”

Based in Munich, the company’s portfolio includes lenses under the Rodenstock and Porsche Design brands.

It has patented “DNEye Pro” technology, which uses thousands of data points to measure the shape and size of each eye.

This enables the company to produce glasses integrated with biometric intelligence for the sharpest vision.

“Mubadala will work in partnership with Apax to support the Rodenstock management team’s vision of accelerating the company’s growth through innovation, commercial execution and digitisation, while continuing to deliver the highest level of service to clients and partners,” said Mina Hamoodi, senior vice president of life sciences at Mubadala.

Mubadala, which invests on behalf of the Abu Dhabi government, is boosting its life sciences and medical technology sector portfolio amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Last week, it signed a deal with the UK government to invest £800 million ($1.1 billion) into the life sciences sector over the next five years. The UK's Life Sciences Investment Programme will also invest £200m as part of the deal.

The partnership is expected to generate stronger links in research and education and deepen UAE-UK trade and investment ties that were worth £32bn in 2019.

Mubadala, which has an asset base of $232bn, has also invested in Europe’s life sciences and medical technology companies.

In October, Mubadala and Denmark-based Novo Holdings jointly invested €250m ($295m) in Evotec, one of the world’s top drug discovery companies that seeks to improve access to precise and effective medicines.

In November, Mubadala joined a consortium to invest in HealthTech company Envision Pharma Group.

The consortium, which was led by Mubadala, includes European healthcare investor Global Healthcare Opportunities, global private equity investment firm HarbourVest Partners and US financial services company Northwestern Mutual.