GE pads mammography prowess with Korean buyout

GE Healthcare ($GE) has signed up to buy mammography technology from South Korean X-ray outfit Vatech, expanding the company's imaging might and giving it a broader base in the growing local market.

Under the deal, GE will pick up mammography assets from Rayence, a Vatech segment, for an undisclosed sum, folding the technology into its Detection and Guidance Solutions business. In addition, GE has signed on to supply CMOS detectors Rayence can sell in the global market.

Rayence's technology will allow GE to tap emerging markets where demand for imaging devices is high but on-the-come-up healthcare systems mandate low-cost products, Women's Health General Manager Prahlad Singh said.

"With the mammography assets of Rayence, tailored for regions with specific cost and access needs, we add capability that allows us to bring affordable mammography solutions to new users and rural communities around the world, in particular physicians undertaking screening programs for breast cancer diagnosis," Singh said in a statement.

GE sees a huge opportunity for imaging in emerging markets, in 2012 launching the Ultrasound Innovation Circle and giving independent researchers access to its technology and talent to develop affordable devices.

GE already holds a huge share of the global imaging market, and the conglomerate has been spending money around the world over the past year to reach even further. Last month, GE bought Unisyn Medical's ultrasound repair segment to bolster its service-based business, and, last year, it acquired Sunnyvale, CA's U-Systems to get its hands on somo•v, the company's FDA-approved device to detect small tumors in dense breast tissue.

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