BD trades $40M for diagnostics partner Alverix

After years of collaboration, Becton Dickinson ($BDX) is buying out San Jose, CA's Alverix, deepening its holdings in point-of-care testing and expanding its palette of diagnostics technology.

The two companies have worked together since 2008 and co-developed BD's Veritor point-of-care diagnostic system, which churns out speedy results with applications in influenza, strep and adenovirus, the two said. That device's warm reception led BD to expand its relationship with Alverix, Executive Vice President William Kozy said, and now his company is pulling the trigger on a buyout in hopes of cashing in on increased demand for near-patient testing.

"Point-of-care testing is increasingly an integral part of patient healthcare in both developed and developing countries and BD is committed to expanding in this space," Kozy said in a statement.

Alverix CEO Richard Tarbox, who will take on the role of vice president and general manager of point-of-care diagnostics at BD, said the deal puts an exclamation point on his company's mission to expand access to bedside tests since being spun out of Avago Technologies in 2007.

"We've been successful in our partnership with BD to launch the BD Veritor system, and we look forward to developing and commercializing additional next-generation point-of-care platforms as part of BD's growing diagnostics business," he said.

That growing business has helped BD diversify its revenue and climb to new heights, and the diagnostics segment brought in $680 million last quarter, good for a 5.4% jump over the same period in the previous year. On the whole, BD posted $2.1 billion in revenue in its fiscal fourth quarter, and the company is expecting between 4% and 5% annual growth in 2014.

Life sciences financier Safeguard Scientifics had invested about $9.4 million in Alverix since 2007, good for a 49% share, and the company will walk away with $17.4 million in cash thanks to BD's acquisition, it said in a release.

- read BD's statement
- here's Safeguard's release

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