The Experts in Animal Health

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Brakke Consulting’s
Animal Health News & Notes for July 21, 2017

Copyright © Brakke Consulting, Inc.
Editor: Lynn Fondon DVM MBA
Brakke Consulting news
Cancer in Dogs and Cats – last week for discount 
earnings news
Orion Animal Health
other news
Champion Petfoods
Embark Veterinary
Fromm Family Foods
Gambol Pet Group
MCF Holdings
Nilsson Bros
Thermo Fisher Scientific
Tuffy’s Pet Foods
Vets First Choice


In 2009 and 2014, Brakke Consulting published an overview of the treatment of cancer in dogs and cats. We are pleased to announce that an update of this highly regarded report will be available this fall.

The 2017 Cancer Study includes:
• information on the incidence, diagnosis, and treatment of the common veterinary cancers, including treatment cost estimates
• a survey of 300 general veterinary practitioners regarding cancer diagnosis, treatment rates, and use of veterinary-approved chemotherapy/immunotherapy treatments
• interviews with veterinary oncologists,
• a survey of 500 pet owners to determine what they are willing to pay to treat a pet with cancer. 
• reviews of new and developing veterinary cancer chemotherapeutics and other treatment modalities

The report is available for pre-order for $6,995 through July 31; the price after July 31 is $7,500. For more information, please visit our website or contact Dr. Lynn Fondon at


• Virbac reported results for the second quarter of 2017.  Revenues were EUR 235 million ($268 million), an increase of 7.5% compared to the same period in 2016, of which organic growth was +6%. (company website)

• Neogen Corporation announced financial results for its 2017 fiscal year ended May 31. Revenues for fiscal 2017 increased 13% to $362 million; net income increased 20% to $43.8 million.  Animal Safety revenues for the year were $190 million, an increase of 9% compared to the prior fiscal year. (company press release)

• Orion Animal Health reported results for the second-quarter of 2017.  Animal health revenues were EUR 21.8 million ($25 million), an increase of 9%. Sales of animal sedatives nearly doubled, reaching EUR 10.1 million ($11.6 million). (Animal Pharm)

• Colgate-Palmolive Company reported results for the second quarter of 2017. Hill’s Pet Nutrition net sales were $572 million, even with the year-ago quarter. Unit volume decreased 1.5% with 2.0% higher pricing, while foreign exchange was negative 0.5%. (company press release)
HIRING HOT SPOTS is apparently THE place for opportunities in sales and sales management within the animal health industry.  Forty-one of the 59 jobs posted on the site fall into the sales category.  A broad range of companies and locations are represented.  In addition, there is also a variety of technical positions on the site. 

To see these and other job postings, visit our website at


• Neogen Corporation announced that the company has named John Adent as chief executive officer, effective immediately. James Herbert, the company’s founder and former CEO, will remain as executive chairman and work closely with Adent in the transition of responsibilities. (company press release)

• Embark Veterinary announced that it has raised $4.5 million in order to expand its suite of canine genetic tests. The latest round of financing was led by Founder Collective, Freestyle Capital, and venture capital fund Third Kind. Embark also recently relocated its headquarters from Austin, Texas to Boston. (GenomeWeb)

• Thermo Fisher Scientific announced the launch of the new Applied Biosystems AgriSeq targeted Genotyping by Sequencing (GBS) solutions, including the Bovine ISAG 200 Parentage Panel. The Bovine ISAG 200 Parentage Panel is based on 200 bovine single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) markers and has been successfully validated across 19 common breeds. (company press release)

• Fromm Family Foods and Champion Petfoods have informed independent retailers who carry their foods and treats that they are choosing to pull their products from following PetSmart’s announcement it had agreed to acquire The announcement follows the decision of Tuffy’s Pet Foods to stop offering its products through the online seller earlier this year. (Vet Advantage – Pet Age)

• Gambol Pet Group, based in Shandong Province, China, announced the launch of a new American subsidiary, Gambol Pet USA. The new California corporation will produce “made in USA” pet treats using US-sourced natural ingredients. (Pet Age)

• Vets First Choice announced it has raised $223 million from a group of investment firms led by Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R) and Hillhouse Capital Group.  The equity infusion will enable it to accelerate its growth, launch new services and begin to expand into Europe and Asia. (company press release)

• Rover announced that it has raised $65 million to expand its pet sitting and dog-walking businesses. Spark Capital led the round, along with additional capital from existing investors. Rover’s site matches pet owners and pet sitters, taking a cut of the transaction. (APPA – Tech crunch)

• CANADA  JBS S.A. announced that its indirect subsidiary JBS Food Canada Inc. has agreed to sell its 75,000 head capacity beef cattle feedyard Lakeside Feeders and adjacent farmland in Alberta, Canada, to MCF Holdings Ltd., a subsidiary of Nilsson Bros. Inc., for $50 million CAD (approximately US$40 million). (Feedstuffs)

• US – BSE  The USDA announced an atypical case of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) in an eleven-year old cow in Alabama.   The animal was showing clinical signs and was found through routine surveillance at an Alabama livestock market; it never entered slaughter channels and at no time presented a risk to the food supply.  This finding of an atypical BSE case will not change the negligible risk status of the US. (

• FRANCE – AVIAN INFLUENZA  The OIE reported that the H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza virus was detected in a backyard poultry flock of around 350 birds in the far north of France after 150 of the birds died. The rest of the flock has been humanely destroyed. This is the first HPAI outbreak in the country since mid-February. (

• US – BIOMARKER RESEARCH  Researchers at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University have discovered important biomarkers in extracellular vesicles in dogs with myxomatous mitral valve disease and congestive heart failure. According to the researchers this is the first biomarker discovery based on extracellular vesicles in a veterinary disease. These findings could provide important insight into the molecular basis, diagnosis and therapies for myxomatous mitral valve disease in dogs, as well as mitral valve prolapse, a similar disease in humans. The results appear online this week in the Journal of Extracellular Vesicles. (

• AUSTRIA – SWINE DISEASE  Scientists at the Vetmeduni Vienna University in Austria have discovered a second virus in swine which causes shaking piglet syndrome.  Due to the clinical signs it causes, the new pathogen is termed Linda virus (lateral shaking inducing neurodegenerative agent). The pathogenic agent is related to the Australian Bungowannah pig virus and more distantly to the classical swine fever virus. Two years ago, Iowa University researchers discovered an atypical porcine pestivirus which also causes the shaking piglet syndrome. (Animal Pharm)

SEPTEMBER 21- 24, 2017

Southwest Veterinary Symposium is a partnership of the Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas VMAs to provide continuing education for veterinary professionals in the southwest region and the nation. Symposium profits are returned to the partner states VMAs. SWVS will be held in September 2017 in San Antonio, Texas at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center. SWVS offers more than 375 hours of quality continuing education courses for veterinary professionals. This will be our 15th anniversary and you won’t want to miss out on all the fun!

For more information or to register for the conference, go to

In today’s Company News, we note the successful raising of money to fund the growth of new businesses in animal health – a great sign for our industry.  The smaller financing deal is one for a company expanding genetic testing in dogs, the other two are technology-driven businesses.  Vets First Choice raised $223 million to grow its analytical insights, proactive digital prescribing and on-line pharmacy management business – that’s a lot in animal health.  Rover raised $65 million for its dog sitting and walking business. 

In animal health, we often narrowly think about things or products – drugs, equipment, etc. – and often overlook the services side of our industry.  There will be a lot of things to prioritize to make all these businesses successful.  I’m reminded of a statement from Cathy Englebert, the highly regarded CEO of Deloitte, she attributes to her success: “Prioritize people over tasks.”  Great ideas, funding, a clear strategy and implementation plan – all necessary for success.  But people will make these businesses wildly successful and we’re rooting for them.

Bob Jones
Senior Consultant
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Dallas, TX  75234    USA


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