Molecular Diagnostics--From Tools to Tests
Instrument makers have made big money off the genomics revolution. But as the research market slows, companies are looking for new business opportunities. One area ripe for development: the molecular diagnostics market.
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Since its acquisition of Digene in 2007, Qiagen's business mix has shifted significantly towards molecular diagnostics even as the company remains true to its founding premise of making things simpler for customers. It has broadened its skill set in nucleic acid analysis with multiple acquired and licensed technologies for platform development while focusing on high volume tests in women's health and infectious diseases and new ties with pharma. Expect its acquisition pattern to continue.
Highlights from the Q2 2008 review of device and diagnostics dealmaking: financing for medical device firms was down 9% from the first quarter to $838mm, which consisted mainly of late-stage venture rounds at 43% of the total. Big Pharma was surprisingly active in device acquisitions, with Novartis buying 25% of surgical instruments maker Alcon, and BMS selling off ConvaTec to private equity as part of its "string of pearls" strategy to focus on biotech. Two FOPOs dominated the $300mm financing the IVD/Research industry, while Invitrogen's $6.4bn stock swap for Applera's Applied Biosystems represented 90% of the M&A dollar volume.
East meets West as ProGenTech, a research tools company based in China and the US, attracts new investors Bay City Capital and DT Capital.