Diagnostics & Imaging Week Associate

Vision BioSystems (VB; Melbourne, Australia) has acquired the business and assets of privately held ImmunoVision Technologies (Springdale, Arkansas) in a cash transaction payable by installments over four years.

The present value of the purchase consideration, staggered over four years, is $56 million using a discount rate of 6%. The acquisition will be immediately earnings per share accretive and should positively impact fiscal 2007 earnings for BV by $6 million at the EBITA line growing to over $10 million by 2010. The consideration of $66.6 million is made up of an upfront payment of A$13.3 million plus four annual payments of A$13.3

BV said the acquisition rounds out its internationally range of pathology laboratory automation instruments and companion reagents.

It will add a number of reagent products to VB's portfolio including the PowerVision polymer based visualization reagent used in immunohistochemistry staining and will bring platform chemistries that complement VB's Novocastra antibody range.

It added that the acquisition will ensure the reliability of supply of a key component of VB's Bond visualization system and is expected to deliver improved combined margins through vertical integration.

Vision BioSystems develops instruments and reagents to clinical histopathology and research laboratories worldwide. Vision's products are used for tissue preparation and staining to assist with the diagnosis of cancer and infectious diseases. It also provides contract manufacturing services to global clients in the broader in vitro diagnostics and life sciences fields.

In other dealmaking:

• Fujirebio Diagnostics (Malvern, Pennsylvania), which focuses on in vitro diagnostics, reported that it has acquired 100% of the shares and equity-related instruments of Swedish biotechnology company, CanAg Diagnostics (Gothenburg, Sweden). Terms were not disclosed.

The combination of Fujirebio and CanAg, each with a focus on the field of serum tumor markers and companies with complementary strengths, is expected to benefit the global diagnostics industry through increased customer offerings and expanded distribution channels to market, Fujirebio said.

Paul Touhey, Fujirebio Diagnostics president and COO, told Diagnostics & Imaging Week: "We actually bought CanAg to strengthen our franchise in cancer; we intend on continuing a cancer tumor marker business, and the acquisition of CanAg gives us some inroads into some more molecular opportunities; they have some molecular research and develop capability that is very strong."

He noted that CanAg has been a competitor for several years before he approached the company earlier in 2006 with the merger proposal.

Fujirebio specializes in in vitro diagnostic products with a focus on oncology. The company reports that it is developing a series of new diagnostics to help doctors detect and/or monitor cancers associated with the bladder, lungs and ovaries.

"This merger will result in greater resources for product development while creating a broader market platform for CanAg Diagnostics' existing product portfolio," said Jan Sundqvist, CanAg Diagnostics' president and CEO. "The merger with Fujirebio Diagnostics is recognition of the achievements of CanAg Diagnostics. The complementary synergies in R&D and clinical focus areas create stimulating possibilities for the future and we are looking forward to being a part of Fujirebio Diagnostics."

Investors in CanAg Diagnostics now divesting their holdings in the company include Karolinska Investment Fund, Swedish Industrial Development Fund, New Business Venture Fund, MP Bio and Founders.

CanAg is focused on the development of immunological reagents against biochemical markers of disease, using these reagents for the development of laboratory tests.

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