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Roche buys GenMark for $1.8bn to bolster diagnostics portfolio

Swiss pharma company will gain respiratory pathogen panels to strengthen its COVID-19 testing capabilities

Swiss pharma company Roche has entered into a definitive merger agreement to acquire GenMark Diagnostics for approximately $1.8bn.

Roche has seen its diagnostics division grow during the pandemic, having received a number of emergency use authorisations from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its COVID-19 tests.

As part of its proposed acquisition of GenMark, Roche will add the company’s respiratory pathogen panels to its arsenal.

This diagnostic identifies the most common viral and bacterial organisms associated with upper respiratory infection, including SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19.

“Acquiring GenMark Diagnostics will broaden our molecular diagnostics portfolio to include solutions that can provide lifesaving information quickly to patients and their healthcare providers in the fight against infectious diseases,” said Thomas Schinecker, chief executive officer of Roche Diagnostics.

“Their proven expertise in syndromic panel testing provides faster targeted therapeutic intervention, resulting in improved patient outcomes and reduced hospital stays, and will contribute to Roche’s commitment to helping control infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance.

“The rapid identification of bloodstream infections and the detection of antimicrobial resistance genes are more essential than ever for hospitals and their patients,” he added.

Roche is offering to fully acquire GenMark for $24.05 per share, reflecting a total transaction value of approximately $1.8bn. The deal has been approved by both Roche and GenMark’s boards of directors and is expected to close in the second quarter of the year.

“As a part of Roche, we can accelerate our mission to enable rapid diagnosis of infectious disease to improve patient outcomes. Together with Roche’s diagnostics healthcare solutions, we will be able to provide a full suite of molecular diagnostic solutions to customers around the world,” said Scott Mendel, chief executive officer of GenMark.

“We are thrilled to become part of Roche and are confident that this is the right path forward for GenMark and our customers,” he added.

Roche also announced this week that it has launched a new SARS-CoV-2 test to detect and differentiate mutations found in variants discovered in the UK, South Africa and Brazil.

The laboratory test, which has been launched for research use only, is designed to help monitor emerging mutations and assess their impact on diagnostics, vaccines and therapeutics, Roche said in a statement.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

16th March 2021

From: Sales

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