Hologic sells former Gen-Probe unit for $85M

Hologic ($HOLX) is selling off one of the diagnostics businesses it snagged in last year's $3.8 billion buy of Gen-Probe, unloading its Lifecodes unit to Immucor for $85 million up front.

Under the deal, which Hologic expects to close next quarter, the company is eligible for an additional $10 million by year's end depending on revenue milestones. Lifecodes makes molecular and antibody-based assays for transplants and transfusion, and while the former Gen-Probe unit is successful, Hologic is trying to reduce its debts, CEO Rob Cascella said.

"Our sale of Lifecodes will enable Hologic to focus our resources on diagnostics opportunities that are more in line with our fundamental growth strategies," Cascella said in a statement, and the company's remaining diagnostics business focuses largely on STI tests and women's health.

Hologic took a $77.8 million loss in the last quarter--a drop the company credits largely to the multi-billion-dollar dive into Gen-Probe--but Hologic looks forward to a brighter 2013. Integrating Gen-Probe's capabilities makes Hologic a leader in the diagnostics world, Cascella has said, and, last quarter, the company raked in $89.5 million from former Gen-Probe units in just two months after the deal closed.

For Immucor, which specializes in reagents for transfusion, the Lifecodes buy boosts its position in that market and gives it a foothold in the transplant diagnostics world, which the company estimates at $400 million and growing. Now, Immucor can offer customers a single source for transplant and transfusion testing, CEO William Hawkins said, giving the company a leg up on its competitors.

- here's Hologic's statement
- read Immucor's release