Beckman Coulter to buy Biosite for $1.55 billion

NEW YORK Sun Mar 25, 2007 11:27pm BST

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Beckman Coulter Inc. BEC.N, which makes products for biomedical tests, said on Sunday it would acquire Biosite Inc. BSTE.O for about $1.55 billion to expand its presence in the market for diagnosis and assessment of heart failure.

Beckman said it would acquire Biosite in a cash tender offer of $85 per share. That marks a 55-percent premium over Biosite's closing stock price of $55.38 on Friday.

The proposed transaction is expected to immediately accelerate Beckman's revenue growth, improve operating margins and boost earnings in 2008 and beyond. Beckman said it remained on track to achieve its full-year 2007 outlook, excluding any impact from the Biosite acquisition.

The deal grew out of a relationship the two companies had over the past four years in the area of B-type Natriuretic Peptide (BNP), a test that aids in the diagnosis and severity-assessment of heart problems, said Scott Garrett, Beckman's president and chief executive officer.

Beckman said it would use its global presence to broaden the sales of Biosite's immunoassay tests. Currently, 85 percent of Biosite's sales come from within the United States.

The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2007. Beckman said it would promptly begin a tender offer for all of Biosite's outstanding common stock. The deal is conditioned upon at least a majority of the outstanding Biosite shares being tendered.

Biosite said its board of directors unanimously voted to recommend that Biosite shareholders tender their shares to Beckman.

Morgan Stanley served as the financial advisor to Beckman, while Goldman Sachs was the financial advisor for Biosite.

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