A Medical Device Daily

Syscore , a company belonging to the family office of German billionaire Sylvia Str her, said it has reached an agreement with the shareholders of Berlin Heart (Berlin) to acquire 100% of that company’s shares. The parties said they agreed not to disclose the purchase price. Berlin Heart makes ventricular assist devices.

Berlin Heart’s new CEO, Rolf K se, MD, said, “With Syscore as our long-term investor we will be able to accelerate our growth, particularly for our flagship products Excor and Incor. Specifically, this new investor means that we will be able to build on our position in the U.S. market, where we have been present since 2005.”

Syscore said it will provide additional capital to implement the ambitious business plan.

Additionally, the successful cooperation is to be expanded with the German Heart Centre (Munich) under the leadership of Roland Hetzer, MD, who will continue to support Berlin Heart with a seat on the company’s advisory board.

The company said that an initial public offering is not planned, and that it will change its legal structure from an AG to a GmbH as part of the transaction, enabling what it said is a “faster and more flexible response to market developments.”

Syscore was advised on the transaction by Sal Oppenheim.

Berlin Heart bills itself as the European market leader for cardiac support systems, and manufactures pumps, cannulas and external components for internal and external use to stabilize cardiac activity in acutely ill patients. The company employs more than 130 people and reported revenues of nearly EUR15 million in 2005.

NewMarket Technology (Dallas) reported the sale of its subsidiary Medical Office Software (MOS) to VirtualHealth Technologies (Lexington, Kentucky) for $3 million in stock and debt. The acquisition was first disclosed in September (Medical Device Daily, Sept. 22, 2006). VirtualHealth, through its subsidiary MB Holding, now owns 100% of MOS.

More than two years ago, NewMarket acquired controlling interest in MOS for $550,000. Since the acquisition, the company has invested about $1 million into MOS as part of the company’s incubation process.

“The sale of MOS with a 100% return on investment is a small scale validation of our new incubation process, but a validation nonetheless,” said Philip Verges, CEO of NewMarket. “It is one of our earliest initiatives started just after the company had reported $2.3 million in annual revenue. We reported $50 million in profitable annual revenue in 2005 and plan to report over $70 million for 2006. We expect to demonstrate an even larger scale validation of our incubation business model with the soon to be announced reorganization of our Chinese operation into an independent public listing.”

MOS, a medical software developer, distribution and service company located in South Florida, currently has an estimated $2 million in annual sales.

VirtualHealth said it plans to incorporate MOS in its controlled prescription drug monitoring program Veriscrip initiatives in addition to expanding its products and services to physicians and healthcare providers. It will also explore ways to use the unique security technology in its Envoii Healthcare subsidiary to further MOS’s product offerings.

MOS provides products and services to the physician and healthcare provider market including practice management services, electronic transactions services, pre-packaged pharmaceuticals and electronic medical records.

In other dealmaking news:

• Tenet Healthcare (Dallas) reported that a company subsidiary has signed an agreement to sell Parkway Regional Medical Center (North Miami Beach, Florida), a 382-bed acute care hospital, to the Public Health Trust of Miami-Dade County, Florida, which operates Jackson Health System .

Pre-tax proceeds from the sale are expected to be about $35 million. Tenet said it expects to use the proceeds for general corporate purposes.

Public Health Trust said it will offer employment to substantially all current employees. The transaction is subject to Miami-Dade County Commission and other regulatory approvals. The sale is expected to be completed by Dec. 31.

Jackson Health System is a healthcare delivery system consisting of Jackson Memorial Hospital , Jackson South Community Hospital , Holtz Children’s Hospital , Jackson Rehabilitation Hospital and a network of primary care clinics, long-term care nursing facilities, school-based clinics, mental health facilities and corrections health services.

In June Tenet reported that Parkway Regional Medical Center was among 11 hospitals identified for divestiture as part of the company’s turnaround.

Discussions and negotiations with potential bidders for each of the remaining six hospitals, plus Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Center-Encino campus and Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Center-Tarzana campus in California that were previously announced for sale, are ongoing.

• National Health Investors (NHI; Murfreesboro, Tennessee) reported that its board of has formed a committee of independent directors to evaluate alternatives to enhance stockholder value. On Oct. 5, the committee received an indication from Andrew Adams, the company’s CEO and a significant shareholder, to acquire the outstanding shares of NHI for $30 a share in cash or in equity in the new company.

The NHI committee said it told Adams that it considers the proposal “inadequate” and that it needs more information about the proposal. The committee said it will assess the details of the proposal, when provided, to determine an appropriate course of action.

The committee retained the Blackstone Group as its financial advisor to assist in evaluating any proposed transactions.

NHI specializes in the financing of healthcare real estate by first mortgage and by purchase and leaseback transactions.

Tenet owns and operates acute care hospitals and related health care services.

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