• Apria Healthcare Group (Lake Forest, California) has agreed to acquire Coram (Denver), a private national provider of home infusion and specialty pharmaceutical services, for $350 million in cash. Apria said it anticipates closing the acquisition, following satisfaction of various customary closing conditions, as early as mid-November. Apria provides home respiratory therapy, home infusion therapy and home medical equipment through about 500 U.S. locations.
  • Celera (Alameda, California) completed the acquisition of Berkeley HeartLab (BHL; Burlingame, California) for about $195 million in cash. BHL is a cardiovascular healthcare company with a portfolio of CLIA-certified tests and disease management services focused on the secondary prevention market. Celera said it believes the acquisition will be accretive to earnings in the second half of FY08, excluding the impact of acquisition-related intangible amortization and transaction and integration expenses. Celera is the molecular diagnostics business of Applera (Norwalk, Connecticut).
  • Cognizant Technology (Teaneck, New Jersey), a provider of IT and business process outsourcing services, said it will acquire marketRx (Bridgewater, New Jersey), a provider of analytics and related software services to life sciences companies in the pharma, biotech and medical devices segments. Cognizant said it will make the acquisition with about $135 million in cash, to be funded from current cash reserves. marketRx combines analytics, market research and software services to provide web-based solutions in three areas for life science companies: sales management and operations, brand marketing and product management, and market research. Cognizant said marketRx brings it a client base representing 75 life sciences customers.
  • ev3 (Plymouth, Minnesota) and FoxHollow Technologies (Redwood City, California) said they have completed their $780 million cash/stock merger. ev3 acquired all of FoxHollow's common stock, and FoxHollow is now an ev3 subsidiary. The merger creates a company with a market cap of about $1.7 billion. The combined portfolio will include products to treat diseases in both the peripheral and neurovascular markets, including atherectomy and thrombectomy, PTA balloons, stents, embolic protection devices, infusion catheters/wires, embolic coils and liquid embolics. The ownership now consists of about 41% from FoxHollow stockholders, 59% from ev3 stockholders. ev3 is focused on endovascular technologies for the minimally invasive treatment of vascular diseases and disorders.
  • The U.S. Federal Trade Commission said it agreed to allow Kyphon (Sunnyvale, California) to buy Disc-O-Tech Medical Technologies (Herzlyia, Israel), and its U.S. subsidiary, Disc Orthopaedic Technologies (Monroe Township, New Jersey), subject to the sale of some assets to address antitrust concerns. The FTC said the approval was contingent on Kyphon's selling Disc-O-Tech's Confidence product lines, used to treat vertebral compression fractures often linked to osteoporosis. Kyphon has 60 days to sell the product line to an FTC approved buyer. A complaint filed by the FTC alleged that Confidence is Kyphon's main competitive threat and, absent the acquisition, would make significant inroads into its near-monopoly position in this market.
  • NxStage Medical (Lawrence, Massachusetts), maker of the NxStage System One portable kidney dialysis machine, said it has completed its acquisition of Medisystems (Seattle) for 6.5 million shares of NxStage stock. The deal to acquire Medisystems, a private developer of devices for use in dialysis and blood-related treatments, was first disclosed in June. The company said at the time that the transaction was valued at $78.7 million, based on a stock price of $12.11. Medisystems makes disposables for in-center dialysis therapy.
  • Royal Philips Electronics (Amsterdam, the Netherlands) ha agreed to acquire Raytel Cardiac Services (RCS; Windsor, Connecticut), a division of Raytel Medical, and other operations from SHL Telemedicine (Tel Aviv, Israel), for about $110 million in cash. RCS will become part of Philips' Home Healthcare Solutions group. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter. RCS provides home cardiac monitoring services that doctors prescribe to heart patients.
  • Specialty Blades (Staunton, Virginia) said it will buy Popper and Sons (New Hyde Park, New York), the terms not disclosed. Popper supplies a variety of specialty needle and tubing products to the medical device and diagnostics industries. According to Specialty Blades, the combination of companies will create "a cutting and piercing component company serving the device industry with estimated sales of $35 million." Peter Harris, president/CEO of Specialty Blades said that the combination of products "should give medical device and diagnostics companies the broadest array of cutting and piercing device development and production skills in the industry and further cement our position as the cutting and piercing center of excellence for thse markets.