With two acquisitions, a Boulder company has become the world’s largest manufacturer of a rare, nutrient-rich substance: bovine colostrum.

The pre-milk discharge from nursing cows is the key ingredient in the flagship product of Boulder’s PanTheryx, a nutritional treatment for infectious diarrhea called DiaResQ.

PanTheryx bought Phoenix-based APS BioGroup and La Belle Associates, of Bellingham, Wash., for an undisclosed sum. The purchases were funded by an investment of an undisclosed amount from Pegasus Capital Advisors, who last year invested $53 million in PanTheryx.

We sat down with PanTheryx CEO Mark Braman to learn more about the acquisitions and future plans for the company:

Why do these two acquisitions make sense for PanTheryx?

It vertically integrates us into one of the key materials of DiaResQ, our lead product, which makes sense from a strategic standpoint. We needed to make sure we had what we needed.

The second aspect is we believe colostrum has potential above and beyond infectious diarrhea category. From an ingredient standpoint, it will be used in multiple other formulations that address other gastrointestinal issues as well. Our belief is that there’s going to be very many more applications.

What other applications?

In our clinical research down in Guatemala, what we saw from a clinical studies perspective is that colostrum was highly effective against specific pathogens that cause infectious diarrhea: salmonella and e coli.

In that work, we saw some very good trending data as it related c diff (clostridium difficile), norovirus and some other important areas we have strong interest in.

How is the commercial debut of DiaResQ coming?

It’s moving along very well. We’re starting to roll out here in the U.S., a very significant market for us, into different retailers by April or May. Pharmacy retail and mass and grocery retail.

On the international side, we just launched in the Philippines with a really strong partner. In the next three to four months, we’re going into Nigeria, Pakistan, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia.

So there’s a number of very large markets that are going to keep us pretty busy. We’re starting to roll out pretty aggressively.

Are you moving to full vertical integration? And will that mean more acquisitions?

Currently that’s not in the plans. A year out from now, there may be other acquisitions that make sense for us to pursue and we’ll certainly be looking.

The acquisitions were strategic for us not only because of vertical integration and insurance of supply, but because the ATS facility in Phoenix brings us the manufacturing side

It’s not just a colostrum production facility it’s a finishing and packaging facility that has a lot of capacity and capability. All product we’ll be marketing will be produced out of the Phoenix facility.

What is the focus moving forward?

We’re in a really exciting growth mode at this point. We think there’s a lot of opportunity for bovine colostrum, so we’ll be investing considerable money for development of additional products.

The team here in Boulder, about 25 employees now, will double over the next nine to 12 months, for sales and marketing and R&D.

We’re in a really busy period in 2017, but our commitment to R&D and to science will continue.

Shay Castle: 303-473-1626, castles@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/shayshinecastle

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