Sunday, March 25, 2007

The Business of Diabetes: Beckman Coulter News

The following article was released Sunday in The Wall Street Journal online. On the surface, it would not appear directly relevant to diabetes as few people with diabetes have ever heard of the company involved. However, few people realize that in 2004, the Massachusetts General Hospital trustees established a relationship with Beckman Coulter in order to significantly discount $1,000,000 of equipment needed to establish the blood assay for Denise Faustman's and David Nathan's human clinical trials. Beckman Coulter is a leading manufacturer of biomedical testing instrument systems, tests and supplies that simplify and automate laboratory processes. Finalizing the blood assay is required before the human clinical trials can begin (otherwise, it would be impossible to measure whether the trial is arresting the autoimmune process which causes type 1 diabetes), and those human clinical trials are expected to begin in 2008.

Regardless of what people may think of the price tag for this equipment, the need for assays is undeniable, especially in a well-designed clinical trial. The fact that Beckman Coulter is able to orchestrate an acquisition for $1.55 billion speaks volume about the health of the company involved. Read on for details.


Beckman Will Buy Biosite for $1.55 Billion
By Rhonda Rundle, The Wall Street Journal
March 25, 2007

LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Beckman Coulter Inc. said it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Biosite Inc. for $1.55 billion, in a combination that will expand Beckman's presence in the immmunoassay segment of the medical test market.

Beckman Coulter said it will acquire all of Biosite's outstanding stock in a cash tender offer of $85 a share. Beckman, based in Fullerton, Calif., said the transaction is expected to immediately accelerate Beckman's revenue growth and improve operating margins. Beckman said it expects the acquisition to boost earnings in 2008 and beyond.

The merger "will position Beckman Coulter as a leading provider of immunoassay tests, especially within cardiac diagnostics," said Scott Garrett, president and chief executive officer. He said the company remains "on track to achieve our full year 2007 outlook, as stated in our February 8 earnings release, excluding any impact from the Biosite acquisition."

Beckman said its offer for all of Biosite's outstanding common stock is conditioned upon at least a majority of the outstanding Biosite shares being tendered, as well as satisfaction of regulatory and other customary conditions. Approval by Beckman Coulter's shareholders isn't required. The combination is expected to close in the second quarter. Biosite is headquartered in San Diego.

Write to Rhonda Rundle at rhonda.rundle@wsj.com

URL for this article:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB117485766625848294.html

3 comments:

BetterCell said...

My present fantasy is to have at laest 25% investment shares in Beckmann.
Just enough so that there is no worry about medical costs associated w/ and w/o T1DM as well of course $$ left over for the pursuit of anything.

Chrissie in Belgium said...

One step at a time - maybe we, I, ME! - maybe I really WILL hear of a cure one day! I had kind of given up.... I have heard it so often.

Scott said...

Perhaps your 401(K) or your IRA is invested, at least partially as part of a diversified mutual fund, in Beckman Coulter? If that's the case, at the very least, maybe that will help ensure a positive return on your retirement fund!

Of course, regardless of what happens in the Faustman trials themselves, valuable learning will happen. Like many of us, however, I'm growing tired of waiting ... after all, how much more do they need to know?! I guess thats not really a fair question, as it seems that autoimmunity is one of the remaining mysteries of medical science -- an area where they need to learn a LOT more!