ICON acquires PRA Health Sciences

Deal creates a world leader in clinical development and commercialisation


This strategic transaction brings together two high-quality, innovative, growing organisations.

For customers

This union brings together two high-quality, growing organisations with similar customer-centric cultures to create the world's largest clinical research organisation powered by healthcare intelligence. All customers, regardless of size,  will benefit from the broader service offerings and geographic footprint, deeper therapeutic expertise, expansive healthcare technology innovation, and functional talent and capabilities.

Our sole focus is on executing clinical trials from Phase 1 to post-approval studies with the highest quality and expertise.  We will leverage innovative strategies to accelerate development through the use of new technologies while focusing on delivering our current projects.

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For employees

ICON and PRA share a common culture focused on operational excellence, technology and innovation, people development and customer delivery. As a combined company, with expanded capabilities and expertise, we continue to expect to offer employees exciting roles and significant career development opportunities within and across the key service areas and geographies in the combined company.

To ensure continued success, we will harness the outstanding leadership and talent that resides in both organisations to deliver operational excellence and continue our focus and mission on patient-centered drug and device development.

Considered and effective integration will take some time and will involve regular communication and dialogue with employees, as well as with clients, as we work through the integration process, which will not be implemented until closing.

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Progress on integration

There is a clear intent that the integration of ICON and PRA will be managed carefully, and over time. Both organisations have a long history of M&A activity and are applying this experience and knowledge to ensure a smooth integration of the new organisation.

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For shareholders

Both ICON and PRA have a long track record of execution (organic and M&A) and delivering sustainable growth.  By leveraging our shared management expertise, best practice operating models, revenue and cost synergies as well as efficient tax structure we expect to create significant future shareholder value.

Revenue synergies will be generated through cross-selling services such as Central & Specialty Labs, Accellacare site network, Language Services, Symphony Home Health and PRA’s mobile health platform and data and information solutions across the broader, diversified, and highly complementary customer base.

Functional, therapeutic and geographic scale are key components of meeting current and anticipated customer needs – the combined business will be number 1 or 2 across core clinical CRO segments.

The combined business will have formal strategic partnerships with a majority of the top 20 biopharma companies, providing a platform for growth and innovation. 

For society

The combined company will create a new paradigm for accelerating clinical research and bringing new medicines to market. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for rapid development of vaccines and medicines that threaten populations, and there continue to remain many illnesses for which medical treatments are needed. At ICON we have long championed that the traditional clinical development model needs to change. By reducing the time and cost of clinical development, we enable a world in which more trials for development of more drugs to meet unmet needs can happen, particularly as medical science advances towards more personalised medical treatments such as immuno-oncology and cell and gene therapies.