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King of Prussia-based water-cooler maker buys Illinois firm for $58M; Palvella raises $10M; Tridiuum adds $9.5M

Quench has purchased water-cooler provider Pure Health Solutions Inc. for $57.6 million. Separately, Wayne-based Palvella Therapeutics has raised $10 million to fund its rare-disease research.

Quench, a King of Prussia water-machine company, has been acquiring regional firms across the U.S.
Quench, a King of Prussia water-machine company, has been acquiring regional firms across the U.S.Read moreJoseph N. DiStefano

Quench, a unit of the King of Prussia-based water-cooler, sparkling-water and coffee-machine aggregator AquaVenture Holdings Ltd., says it has purchased the filtered water-cooler provider Pure Health Solutions Inc. and its Pure Water Technology business, based in Lincolnshire, Ill., from the private-equity investor ClearLight Partners for $57.6 million.

Quench CEO Tony Ibarguen says this marks his company’s ninth acquisition in 2018, and AquaVenture’s second-biggest deal since it first sold shares to the public in 2016. The deal boosts Quench’s customer base by about 25 percent, to more than 50,000, Ibarguen said in a statement.

Separately, Wayne-based Palvella Therapeutics says it has raised $10 million from Ligand Pharmaceuticals, San Diego, “to support a Phase 2/3 [fast-track] trial of Palvella’s rare-disease candidate, PTX-022.”

That’s an experimental treatment that Palvella developing in partnership with Ireland-based MedPharma Ltd. The plan is to use Palvella’s Qtorin formulation and delivery technology to deliver a genetic therapy to treat pachyonychia congenita, a rare disorder in keratin-production genes that leaves patients with “excruciating pain in the feet.”

In exchange for the money, Palvella granted Ligand milestone payments and a cut of royalties.

Palvella was drawn to Ligand’s “track record in partnering with leading biopharmaceutical companies,” including Novartis, Amgen, Merck, and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen, among others, chief executive Wes Kaupinen said in a statement. Palvella says its treatment has collected FDA fast-track and orphan-drug designations.

Also, the health-technology firm Tridiuum says it will use $9.5 million in new financing for its behavioral-health management software to move its offices, from a two-home-sized 4,000-square-foot location in Wayne to a 12,000-square-foot facility at 1650 Arch St. (former Insurance Co. of North America tower) in Center City, and add staff.

The company plans to “expand its sales force [and] marketing efforts” and also add new product features, said Tridiuum boss Mark Redlus.

New equity investors include Sopris Capital of New York and Fresenius Medical Care Ventures, Waltham, Mass. Debt investor is Silicon Valley Bank. Earlier investors Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeast Pennsylvania and John Martinson, who founded Edison Partners, also added cash.

Tridiuum supplies “a unique product offering," “an impressive recurring revenue stream,” and the promise of growth, said Sopris principal Mark Groner in a statement.

“People who have behavioral health issues are likely to have higher medical costs,” which might be trimmed if they can be treated together, added Albert Wiegman, head of Fresenius Medical Care Ventures GmbH.