Bausch & Lomb (B&L; Rochester, New York) said it has completed the purchase of ophthalmic pharmaceutical company Groupe Chauvin (Montpellier, France) and several related companies for about $221 million. The purchase gives B&L extended presence in several European companies and will provide support for faster commercialization of pharmaceutical products, especially for back-of-the-eye diseases, the company said.

Bio-Rad Laboratories (Hercules, California) has sold the assets of its semiconductor measurements business in York, England, to Accent Semiconductor Technologies (Mountain View, California). Accent will pay $27 million in cash, plus $8 million in a subordinated note, and Bio-Rad will receive an 18% interest in Accent. The spun-off unit supplies measurement tools to semiconductor manufacturers for monitoring wafer production processes and semiconductor device research. Bio-Rad said the divestiture will allow it to have better focus on its core markets, including life science research products, clinical diagnostics and analytical instruments.

CMDI (Princeton, New Jersey) reported completing its purchase of the assets of CAT-ECG (Long Island, New York), a developer of cardiac testing and telemedicine products. Terms of the purchase were not disclosed. James Clingham, CMDI president, said the purchase is the second of a series of acquisitions the company will make and that its overall plan is "to find suitable partners to cover the range of diagnostic services from baseline telemedicine diagnostics to high-end services in managing sophisticated hospital based laboratories, like our cardiovascular division." The combined companies will serve more than 300 long-term care facilities and institutions, hundreds of medical offices and more than a dozen in-hospital labs.

GE Medical Systems (Waukesha, Wisconsin) has completed its acquisition of Lunar (also Waukesha), a developer of systems for diagnosing osteoporosis and metabolic bone diseases. Lunar will become a subsidiary of GE and do business as GE Medical Systems Lunar. Each share of Lunar common stock will be converted into 0.322 shares of GE common stock, plus cash for any fractional shares. Lunar operates facilities in the U.S., Germany, Belgium, France and Australia. Jeffrey Immelt, president and CEO of GE Medical, said the acquisition would allow his company to "better serve the technology needs of health care providers and their patients, particularly in the area of women's health care."

Immune Response (Dublin, Ohio) said its shareholders approved the company's merger with and into its wholly owned subsidiary, Opticon Medical (Plymouth, Minnesota). The outstanding shares of Immune have been converted into the same number of shares of Opticon stock. Opticon President and CEO William Post said the merger "allows us to consolidate our organization into a single corporation, resulting in certain operating and cost efficiencies, clarifying our corporate identity, and benefiting both our posture in the medical device industry and our investors." Immune Response acquired Opticon Medical, a development stage company in the urology sector, this past February.

Jomed NV (Beringen, Switzerland) said it will acquire the stock of EndoSonics (Rancho Cordova, California) for $11 per share, or a total of $205 million. A new offering of Jomed shares will be used to fund $150 million of the purchase, with the balance to be made through Jomed's existing cash, the company said. Jomed is a leading European maker of stents for interventional cardiology, offering more than 600 products. In 1999, the company had sales of $39.5 million and a net profit of $1.9 million. EndoSonics, which makes products for visualization through intravascular ultrasound, had 1999 sales of $48 million in 40 countries. The tender offer is expected to close in mid- to late-September.

Richard-Allan Scientific (Kalamazoo, Michigan), a subsidiary of laboratory products maker Sybron International (Milwaukee, Wisconsin), has acquired Lab Vision (Fremont, California), a private manufacturer of automated staining instruments and antibodies. Lab Vision makes products used by immunohistochemistry laboratories to detect the presence of specific antigens in tissue sections, and Richard-Allan said that the acquisition would advance its goal of becoming "a maker of a broad line of products used by anatomical pathology laboratories." Lab Vision's annual sales revenues are currently about $9 million. Sybron said Lab Vision will operate out of its existing California facility and retain its current management.

Thermo Electron (Waltham, Massachusetts) unit Trex Medical (Danbury, Connecticut), a developer of imaging systems, said it will sell its domestic medical imaging businesses to Hologic (Bedford, Massachusetts) for $55 million, through a combination of $30 million in cash and a three-year secured note of $25 million. Hologic is a supplier of systems for diagnosing metabolic bone diseases and produces flat-plate collectors used to replace X-ray film in digital radiography. Hologic's FY99 revenues were $84 million. In the deal, Hologic acquires Trex's operations in Littleton, Massachusetts, and Danbury, Connecticut, with Trex retaining responsibility for the Fischer patent-infringement lawsuit. Trex's Trophy dental imaging business, based in France, will be sold separately. The Hologic purchase is slated for 3Q00 closing. (See Business Developments, this issue, for more on Thermo Electron's reorganization efforts.)

No Comments