The growing demand for genetic-sequencing machines and other advanced… (Rob Carr / Associated Press )
Capping a long bidding war, laboratory-equipment maker Life Technologies Corp. of Carlsbad has agreed to be acquired by Thermo Fisher Scientific for $13.6 billion.
The deal announced Monday was approved by both companies' boards of directors and includes the assumption of $2.2 billion in debt. Thermo Fisher, based in Waltham, Mass., agreed to pay $76-a-share in cash, a 12% premium to Life Technologies' closing price of $68 Friday.
Life Technologies makes equipment that helps analyze genes, diagnose diseases and improve food safety testing and forensics. The Carlsbad company had revenue of $3.8 billion last year and more than 10,000 employees.
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Gregory T. Lucier, chairman and chief executive of Life Technologies, said "this transaction brings together two companies intent on accelerating innovation for our customers."
Thermo Fisher had competition for Life Technologies. Sigma-Aldrich Corp. and a private-equity group including Blackstone Group LP were said to be interested. Thermo said its deal is expected to close early next year.
The combined companies will seek to capitalize on the demand for advanced genetic-sequencing machines that are becoming widely used in medical research and, in some cases, patient care.
Spending on genetic tests has reached $5 billion annually and could top $25 billion by 2021, according to a recent study by insurance giant UnitedHealth Group Inc.
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