FRANCE – bioMérieux, a global leader in in-vitro diagnostics, has agreed to acquire Specific Diagnostics, a privately held company based in the United States that has developed a rapid antimicrobial susceptibility test (AST) system that delivers phenotypic AST directly from positive blood cultures.

bioMérieux has held a minority stake in Specific Diagnostics since 2019, and the two companies had signed a co-distribution agreement covering the European market in 2021.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a global threat, with infections caused by antibiotic-resistant pathogens among the leading causes of death worldwide.

Fast and accurate AST results and interpretation are critical for clinicians to save patients’ lives and rapidly optimize therapies.

Rapid AST improves patient outcomes while also lowering global AMR burdens by enabling the implementation of effective institutional Antimicrobial Stewardship (AMS) programs.

The SPECIFIC REVEAL Rapid AST system, which is perfectly aligned with bioMérieux’s priority of providing innovative diagnostics to support Antimicrobial Stewardship, provides actionable results for Gram-negative bacteria directly from positive blood cultures in an average of 5 hours.

This assists clinicians in addressing the challenge of bloodstream infections, allowing for either timely de-escalation to a more focused, appropriate, and lower-cost therapy, or life-saving rapid escalation to more effective therapy in the presence of a multidrug-resistant (MDR) infection.

Alexandre Mérieux, Chairman and CEO of bioMérieux declared: “This acquisition reinforces our long-standing commitment to sustain antibiotic efficacy for future generations.

With the addition of Specific Diagnostics’ REVEAL Rapid AST system into our microbiology portfolio, bioMérieux further supports clinicians and laboratories in further improving patient outcomes and enhancing antimicrobial stewardship, leveraging our extensive distribution network.”

With the addition of SPECIFIC REVEAL Rapid AST, the bioMérieux Sepsis Solution now provides same-day AST results for Gram-negative bacteria, allowing for more targeted therapy and improved patient outcomes.

The SPECIFIC REVEAL Rapid AST system, developed by Specific Diagnostics and based on its unique, patented metabolomic signature technology.

It offers an easy-to-use instrument with a targeted menu, small footprint, and modular design for adaptable throughput, well-suited to address the needs of clinical laboratories.

SPECIFIC REVEAL integrates seamlessly with bioMérieux’s Sepsis Solution, which includes BACT/ALERT VIRTUO, VITEK MS PRIME, BIOFIRE BCID2, VIDAS PCT, and VITEK2, and is supported by Lab Consultancy and the Data & IT analytics suite.

The addition of SPECIFIC REVEAL to bioMérieux’s portfolio happens as the company recently announced the FDA approval of VITEK MS PRIME.

Financial details

Under the terms of the agreement, bioMérieux will acquire 100% ownership of Specific Diagnostics for an acquisition price equivalent to 3.3% of bioMérieux market capitalization as of April 11, 2022.

The acquisition price will be paid with a combination of cash and shares issued to certain Specific Diagnostics shareholders. The issuance of new bioMérieux shares shall result in a share dilution of approximately 1%.

bioMérieux intends to launch a share buyback program, post-closing, to offset this share dilution over time. Completion of this acquisition remains subject to usual closing conditions, in
particular certain regulatory approvals.

The deal is expected to close by the end of the second quarter 2022.

Thanks to this acquisition, bioMérieux expects to further develop its global leadership in clinical microbiology, bringing major innovation to the market and further strengthening its fight against Antimicrobial Resistance.

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