In the 16 months prior to filing for an initial public offering, Quintiles spent more than $280 million buying companies that bolstered the Durham clinical research organization’s capabilities in clinical testing, genomics and drug commercialization.

Quintiles has long had global scale to run clinical trials around the world. But as pharmaceutical companies turn to CROs to take on more tasks, CROs are rounding out their offerings via acquisitions. No financial terms were disclosed when Quintiles announced these deals. But here’s what the CRO paid, according to the firm’s registration statement.

Outcome Sciences – Quintiles paid $177.0 million In October 2011 to acquire this Massachusetts firm that provides late-stage and post-marketing drug research services.

VCG & Associates – VCG, a Massachusetts firm that offers drug commercialization services, cost $8.8 million in October 2011. 

Advion BioServices – In November 2011, Quintiles closed on its $54.9 million deal for this New York company, which offers early-stage drug testing services.

Expression Analysis – In August 2012, Quintiles closed on its $39.7 million acquisition of Expression Analysis, a genomic services company that enhances the CRO’s genetic sequencing and advanced bioinformatics expertise.

In Quintiles’ IPO filing, the company makes the case that pharmas and CROs must be ready for an increasingly complex pharmaceutical environment. Governments and insurance companies want to see demonstration of value and benefit from new drugs they’re asked to pay for. Biological drugs and genetically-based treatments and companion diagnostics mean that new therapies present new development, regulatory and commercialization challenges. Quintiles argues that the large, global CROs that have a breadth of service offerings are best positioned to help pharma companies.

“We believe that biopharmaceutical companies have historically preferred, and will continue to prefer, financially sound, global CROs with broad therapeutic and functional expertise such as our company when selecting strategic providers,” Quintiles said in the filing.

Quintiles may not be done buying companies. With 27,000 employees working in about 100 countries, the company doesn’t need to make deals to enter new markets. Any acquisitions would likely be similar to those done over the last year, which brought new expertise and capabilities. Quintiles plans to grow “organically and through selective acquisitions,” the firm says in its filing.