Cryo-Save and Lazaron Biotechnologies establish stem cell bank joint venture in South Africa
Cryo-Save Group N.V. (Euronext: CRYO, 'Cryo-Save'), the leading international
family stem cell bank, and John Daniel Holdings Ltd (Johannesburg Stock Exchange
VCM: JDH), a venture capital company and the controlling shareholder of Lazaron
Biotechnologies (SA) Ltd, Africa's first private cord blood stem cell bank,
announced today that the companies signed a memorandum of understanding to
establish a new stem cell bank joint venture in South Africa.
This joint venture will contain the sales and marketing operations of both
companies and the Cape Town processing and storage facility of Lazaron
Biotechnologies ("Lazaron") in South Africa, and will immediately expand its
operations into several African countries. The joint venture combines Cryo-
Save's leading expertise in stem cell processing and storage with JDH's local
and African market expertise. The joint venture will offer customers the option
of storing cord tissue and stem cells from cord blood in South Africa or off
shore in Belgium.
The use of stem cell technology in the treatment of life threatening diseases
has increased significantly over the past decade resulting in therapies for over
70 diseases now being applied. More recently the use of stem cells for cosmetic
and post injury healing therapies have been established. A rich source of stem
cells is from the umbilical cord of new born infants. The added benefit of this
source is the fact that the procedure is non-invasive as the stem cells are
derived from the cord blood and cord tissue. The new joint venture provides for
the harvesting and banking of stem cells from both cord blood (hematopoietic) as
well as cord tissue (mesenchymal) locally or alternatively off shore in Belgium.
The Lazaron laboratory located in Cape Town will be upgraded to cater for the
increase in volumes and will meet the highest quality standards applied by Cryo-
Save around the world.
The joint venture will trade under the name Cryo-Save South Africa. Subject to
the approval of the shareholders of Lazaron, the joint venture is expected to
start before the end of July 2011.
Arnoud van Tulder, Chief Executive Officer of Cryo-Save, commented:
"We are optimistic about the opportunity to become a major force in stem cell
banking in South Africa and into Africa. The growth potential in both
territories is substantial and Lazaron's knowledge of the local markets will
ensure that we maintain a strong sales and distribution network."
Terence Gregory, Chief Executive Officer of JDH commented:
"The joint venture with an international leader ensures that the new company
enhances its position at the cutting edge of stem cell harvesting and storage
both in respect of technology as well as protocols. We are proud of the
achievements of Lazaron in South Africa and the joint venture will allow us to
take the business to a new level."
Cryo-Save Group + 31 (0) 575 548 998
Arnoud van Tulder, Chief Executive Officer
John Daniel Holdings Ltd + 27 (0) 12 809 3599
Terence Gregory, Chief Executive Officer
Free footage of Cryo-Save is available on (www.videobankonline.com)
About Cryo-Save (www.cryo-save.com/group)
Cryo-Save, the leading international family stem cell bank, already stores
175,000 samples from cord blood and umbilical cord tissue for newborns and
adipose tissue for adults. These stem cells can mean the difference between life
and death in the case of future threats to the health of the donors. There are
already several diseases that can be cured by the use of stem cells, and the
number of treatments will only increase. Driven by its international business
strategy, Cryo-Save is now represented in 40 countries on three continents, with
ultra-modern processing and storage facilities in Belgium, Germany, Dubai, India
and France (validation in progress).
About JDH (www.john-daniel.com)
JDH is a South African venture capital investment holding company established in
1998 and listed on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange (JSE). JDH currently has
two operational subsidiaries:
* Lazaron Biotechnologies (SA) Ltd, Africa's first private cord blood stem
* Vinguard Ltd, the manufacturer of monolithic, polymeric, slow release SO2
table grape protection sheets for optimum post-harvest protection of table
The main business of JDH is that of an investment holding company focused on
early stage strategic investments in advanced technologies, in South Africa,
which have global applications and offer more cost effective products than
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