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Our History

BBI Solutions history timeline

BBI was founded in 1986, when John Chandler at Cardiff University developed and manufactured our now world-renowned gold nanoparticles for the first time and supplied them to the electron microscopy industry.

Since then, the company has grown its portfolio of products to include gold reagents, antibodies, antigens, enzymes, serum and plasma, cell culture reagents as well as offering antibody development services,
lateral flow assay development and manufacture, and of course, our Novarum™ smartphone diagnostic platform.

See how we have grown


Our history infographic


We have served the global diagnostics industry for over 50 years, so you know you’re in safe hands.

Let us tell you our story:

  • 1959 Seravac, the oldest company within BBI Solutions was founded.
  • 1971 Biozyme Laboratories established as a manufacturer of diagnostic enzymes.
  • 1986 BBI was founded by John Chandler of Cardiff University. He developed and manufactured our world renowned gold nanoparticles and supplied these into the electron microscopy industry. Back then, the company was originally known as Biocell Research Laboratories.
  • 1990 BBI was established as a leader in the electron microscopy research field and established distributors in 15 different countries. We then expanded into the in-vitro diagnostics industry with our unique formula gold.
  • 2000 We went through a management buy-out, led by our Managing Director Julian Baines.
    Stakeholders include 6 Heads of Department tasked with growing divisions of Sales & Marketing, Gold Reagents, Research & Development and Manufacturing Operations.
  • 2005 Our Madison USA office was founded, which allowed us to introduce our extensive range of products to the US.
  • 2006 Alchemy in Dundee, Scotland was acquired. The site now manufactures numerous different lateral flow test strips every year.
  • 2007 We acquired both Biozyme and Seravac, allowing us to expand our offering to include a variety of enzymes.
  • 2008 We were acquired by Alere (formerly known as Inverness Medical).
  • 2010 SCIPAC, a UK based company with expertise in manufacturing human proteins and monoclonal antibodies, was acquired.
  • 2012 Vision Biotech was added to our portfolio, enabling us to further our lateral flow test manufacturing capabilities.
  • 2013 We completed our brand consolidation, to bring you all of our products under one umbrella BBI Solutions.
  • 2014 Liam Taylor appointed as Managing Director of BBI Solutions
  • 2015 BBI Group is acquired by Exponent Private Equity from Alere
  • 2016 Novarum Diagnostics acquired by BBI Group from joint venture
  • 2017 BBI Group announces a new £14m investment plan for 2017 which will include a new global HQ in South Wales
    • BBI Solutions opens legal facility in China
    •  Maine Biotechnology Services Inc. acquired
  • 2018 Mario Gualano is appointed as Group CEO. Mario was previously Global Head of Commercial
    •    BBI opens its Global Headquarters in Crumlin, South Wales, UK
  • 2020 April, BBI Group joins the UK Rapid Test Consortium to rapidly develop and rollout coronavirus tests
  • 2020 June, BBI Group acquires DIARECT AG, establishing BBI as the leading provider of antigens in the autoimmune and tick-borne IVD markets.

BBI Solutions Brands


The acquisition of DIARECT in June 2020 and their world leading recombinant autoimmune antigen capability immediately enhances BBI’s portfolio and position as a ‘complete’ immunoassay reagent supplier. This further enhances BBI’s position as the world’s largest diagnostics components company with a market leading antigen portfolio.


Maine Biotechnology Services brings 27 years of knowledge, experience, process development, and project management to our customers to ensure the best possible antibodies for any application. As antibody development goals in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry have evolved the acquisition of MBS will help BBI further meet and exceed our customers needs.


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