Velocity Clinical Research acquires Meridian Clinical Research creating largest global research sites business

Posted: 15 Dec 2022

London, UK – Global Healthcare Opportunities, or GHO Capital Partners LLP (“GHO”), the European specialist investor in global healthcare, acknowledges the announcement from its portfolio company Velocity Clinical Research, regarding its acquisition of Meridian Clinical Research.

Velocity Clinical Research (“Velocity”), the leading integrated research site organisation, today announces its acquisition of Meridian Clinical Research for an undisclosed amount. The deal makes Velocity the largest dedicated research site organisation in the world with approximately 80 sites in the US and Europe, and a tech hub in Hyderabad, India.

Meridian is a multi-specialty site organisation for Phase I-IV clinical trials.  As a result of this acquisition, Velocity will have sites in 25 US states, employing over 1,500 clinical research professionals.

Dr. Paul Evans, President and Chief Executive of Velocity said, “Having admired Nicole Osborn and the Meridian team’s approach to clinical research for some time now, I am particularly pleased to welcome them to Velocity. The combination of two of the best businesses in this sector moves the needle for clients, changing the relationship from transactional to strategic.

A multi-site business of our size means biopharma and Clinical Research Organizations can circumvent the individual site-selection process, dramatically reducing the time needed to activate sites and recruit patients, which speeds up drug development.”

Velocity’s integrated model reduces the site selection process by 6-8 months. Consequently, Sponsors and Clinical Research Organisations (CRO) have additional foresight and planning time to resource, activate, recruit and deliver clinical trials.  Post acquisition, the company will have in excess of one million patients in its database to tap for future studies and provide data to better inform protocol design.

Velocity will continue to make significant investment into technology, driving superior site performance in terms of patient recruitment and engagement, and create tools needed for decentralised trials, which is growing in importance.

Nicole Osborn, who founded Meridian in 1999 will stay with the company to ensure a smooth integration before stepping back from day-to-day management, said, “I am very proud of the company my team and I have built. Meridian has played a major role in drug development that communities across the globe rely upon today, including as a premier site network in the development of COVID-19 vaccines. I’d like to pay tribute to the entire Meridian workforce who have helped to make us the outstanding organization that Velocity is acquiring today.”

Velocity’s sites are fully integrated via a centralised infrastructure and common technology backbone, allowing for superior patient enrollment and consistent, high-quality data delivery. As a result, CROs and biopharma companies can benefit from simplified access to international clinical research.

Since GHO’s investment in 2021, when Velocity had 14 sites,  the clinical trials space has seen a number of entrants ranging from small individual funds to large global firms.

We expect to see further merger and acquisition activity in the sites industry next year and beyond. The consolidation of consolidators signals a maturing market and Velocity is leading the charge. This acquisition establishes a major player in the clinical research arena and we intend to use this as a platform to build the next stage of our evolution.
Dr. Paul Evans
President and Chief Executive of Velocity

Meridian Clinical Research was advised by Edgemont Partners investment banking firm, with Ice Miller LLP providing legal advice. For Velocity Clinical Research Ropes & Gray LLP provided legal advice while Alvarez and Marsal provided financial advice.

About GHO Capital
Global Healthcare Opportunities, or GHO Capital Partners LLP, is a leading specialist healthcare investment advisor based in London. We apply global capabilities and perspectives to unlock high growth healthcare opportunities, targeting Pan-European and transatlantic internationalisation to build market leading businesses of strategic global value. Our proven investment track record reflects the unrivalled depth of our industry expertise and network. We partner with strong management teams to generate long-term sustainable value, improving the efficiency of healthcare delivery to enable better, faster, more accessible healthcare. For further information, please visit

About Velocity Clinical Research
Velocity Clinical Research, headquartered in Durham, N.C., is the leading integrated site organisation for clinical trials, offering dedicated site capabilities to help biopharmaceutical and contract research organisation customers find the right patients for their studies. Velocity supports global drug development in primarily conducting phase II and phase III clinical trials. The company has nearly 80 locations globally, including a technology hub in Hyderabad, India.
We place the care of the patient at the heart of everything we do. With over 35 years of experience running sites and nearly 8,000 studies completed, Velocity has refined its patient recruitment strategies while maintaining a focus on delivering timely and reliable data quality. For more information, please visit

About Meridian Clinical Research
Meridian Clinical Research was founded by Nicole Osborn in 1999 in Omaha, NE. More than 20 years later, Meridian has grown from a single dedicated research center to a network of more than 35 clinical research sites and 90 principal investigators across North America. Meridian’s principal investigators are deeply engaged in clinical research, and every research site is staffed by highly trained research personnel.
Meridian partners with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies to conduct clinical trials for everything from flu vaccines and acne, to chronic conditions like multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s disease, and has enrolled more than 80,000 participants across more than 3,400 research studies to date. For more information, please visit