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Merck acquires cell imaging instrument maker Amnis

Published on 01/09/11 at 09:14am

EMD Millipore, the Massachussetts-based life sciences arm of Merck KGaA, has bought US cell imaging instrument maker Amnis Corporation for an undisclosed sum.

Millipore already has the Guava range of flow cytometry and flow cytometry assays, but the Amnis deal improves on the company’s offering, said Jonathan DiVincenzo, head of its bioscience business unit.

The acquisition will “create tremendous value for our customers’ research outcomes in the flow cytometry workflow”, he said.

Amnis’ high speed products are used in flow cytometry applications in academic, biotech and pharma cell analysis and research.

The company has 40 employees at its Seattle HQ and turned over $14 million last year. The deal is expected to go through in the final quarter of 2011.

“Today there are no comparable alternatives that enable our customers to combine flow cytometry and image analysis in one integrated solution,” DiVincenzo went on. “With this acquisition, EMD Millipore becomes the only provider of this technology.”

Amnis possesses a talented workforce, a strong intellectual property position and unique know-how, he added.

Amnis chief executive David Basiji said becoming part of Merck “will greatly accelerate development of novel applications in imaging flow cytometry, enhance our customer support, and accelerate product development”.

Bought by the German pharma manufacturer in July last year and combined with its chemical division, Millipore focuses on areas such as bio-research and bio-production.

Merck announced last week that diagnostics expert Robert Yates would take up the newly-created role of Millipore president on September 1.

Yates was formerly head of Roche’s life sciences business in Penzberg, Germany, and served as a member of the manufacturer’s diagnostics executive committee.

Adam Hill

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