India's Trivitron expands Dx reach with $20.4M buy

Last month, Trivitron Healthcare snagged a $75 million investment it planned to use on M&A, and now it's doing just that. The Indian devicemaker is breaking into the diagnostics world with a $20.4 million buyout of Finland's Ani Labsystems.

Ani makes in vitro diagnostics kits for neonatal screening; cardiac, gastroenterology and respiratory ailments; and infectious disease, Healthcare Global reports. The acquisition gives Trivitron a spot in the fast-growing molecular diagnostics market.

The Chennai-based Trivitron has long been a wholesale distributor of medical devices and diagnostics, but, in recent years, the company has started its transition into in-house manufacturing, and the effort has brought in crores on crores of foreign investment. October's $75 million came from Fidelity Worldwide, and in July the company launched a joint venture with Italian diagnostics outfit DiaSorin to tap India's estimated $500 million Dx market. Over the summer, rumors circulated that the emerging markets-obsessed Medtronic ($MDT) was in talks to buy a stake in the Indian company, but nothing has trickled out since then.

Despite its barn-burning growth in drug development, when it comes to devices and diagnostics, India lags behind China, where local companies have leveraged low-cost production and growing local demand to compete worldwide. But Trivitron is out to blaze a trail, co-founder G.S.K. Velu has said, planning to emulate Chinese companies like Mindray Medical ($MR) and become a global player.

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