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Abbott To Buy LIMS Firm For $123 Million

The acquisition of Starlims, a provider of laboratory information management systems, aims to boost Abbott's position in the global diagnostics market.

Abbott plans tobuy Starlims Technologies, a vendor of laboratory information management systems, for about $123 million in cash.

"The acquisition strengthens Abbott's competitive position in the global diagnostics market, providing advanced web-based applications to help laboratories efficiently store, retrieve and analyze a significantly increasing volume of clinical, managerial and administrative data," Abbott said in statement.

Abbott plans to continue serving the non-clinical market segments currently served by Starlims.

Abbott discovers, develops, manufactures and markets pharmaceuticals and medical products, including nutritionals, devices and diagnostics. The company employs more than 72,000 people and has products in more than 130 countries.

Starlims has 160 employees worldwide and more than 20 years of Laboratory Information Management Systems (LIMS) experience. Starlims' main product, also called Starlims, is designed to improve reliability of laboratory sampling, support compliance with regulations and standards, and provide comprehensive reporting, monitoring and analysis.

The company's products are used in government, manufacturing, and life sciences organizations for quality assurance and control, testing and monitoring, and research and development. Starlims is headquartered in Israel, with operations in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Hong Kong, and serves more than 500 organizations in 40 countries.

Abbott will acquire all outstanding equity of Starlims for $14 per share, for a total purchase price of about $123 million. Starlims now has about $18 million cash on hand. Abbott expects the transaction to close in the first quarter of 2010, and will not effect 2009 results.

The acquisition is one of several healthcare IT acquisitions announced this month. Microsoft said it plans to acquire Sentillion, a privately held developer of software tools for healthcare. Sentillion offers identity and access management systems for healthcare environments. Financial terms were not disclosed. And GE Healthcare bought Living Independently Group, which makes wireless technology to track seniors' daily activities, watching for changes that could signify a medical problem or emergency. The terms of both deals were not disclosed.

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