PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y.—Pall Corp., a $2.7 billion filtration,separation and purification company, has entered into a definitive mergeragreement to acquire ForteBio Inc., a provider of systems that enablereal-time, label-free analysis of biomolecular interactions, providinginformation on affinity, kinetics and concentration. The transaction isexpected to close this month. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Upon closing, ForteBio will become a wholly owned subsidiaryof Pall. In the short term, Pall expects the impact of the merger on thecompany's results of operations to be immaterial. Completion of the merger issubject to certain customary closing conditions.
"We have followed ForteBio's success and watched it growinto a leader in the label-free assay technology category," observes Ken Frank,president of Pall's BioPharmaceuticals division. "With its products firmlyestablished in the process monitoring and protein research markets, we believedForteBio's portfolio of analytical solutions would be an ideal complement toPall's existing tools used in process development. The acquisition willposition us well to take advantage of opportunities in the more than $1 billionbiopharmaceuticals process monitoring market."
Headquartered in Menlo Park, Calif., with subsidiaries inLondon and Shanghai, ForteBio offers an array of label-free protein analysisinstruments that will extend Pall's capabilities in the biopharmaceuticalsprocess monitoring and protein research market.
ForteBio's original Octet family of products is based on thecompany's BioLayer Interferometry (BLI) technology. It incorporates disposableoptical Dip and Read biosensors that measure multiple interactions in parallel,without the use of detection agents.
"With BLI technology, a layer of molecules attached to thetip of an optic fiber creates an interference pattern at the detector," notesFrank. "Any change in the number of molecules bound causes a measured shift inthe pattern, enabling quantification."
Used for protein quantitation and kinetic characterization,ForteBio's analytical products allow researchers to achieve results inreal-time without the aid of fluorescent, radio or calorimetric labels ormarkers that can contaminate samples. Unlike other label-free techniques, BLIdoes not require complex sample preparation, "making it much more flexible,"Frank adds.
With approximately 400 instruments placed worldwide, ForteBio'sOctet systems have already been adopted by many of Pall's customers, Franknotes.
"Key markets where we see opportunity includebiopharmaceuticals process monitoring and protein research," he says. "Forsingle-sample analysis, ForteBio's recently launched BLItz platform will makelabel-free technology more accessible and cost-effective for individual benchscientists and researchers. It is likely to allow broad access to academicresearch markets."
"Pall's strong global sales channel will extend the reach ofForteBio instruments and better position us to capitalize on opportunities inemerging regions in Europe and Asia," says Dr. Joseph D. Keegan, ForteBio's CEOand president. "Demand for label-free protein analysis continues to intensify,and through the merger, we now can bring the advantages of ForteBio systems toa wider range of customers."
Pall, with total revenues of $2.7 billion for fiscal year2011, is an S&P 500 company with almost 11,000 employees serving customersworldwide. Pall has been named a "top green company" by Newsweek and has been a partner in the EnvironmentalProtection Agency (EPA)Climate Leaders program since 2008. Partner companiescommit to reducing their impact on the global environment by completing acorporate-wide inventory of their greenhouse gas emissions based on a qualitymanagement system, setting aggressive reduction goals and annually reportingtheir progress to the EPA.
Through program participation, companies create a crediblerecord of their accomplishments and receive EPA recognition as corporateenvironmental leaders. Climate Leaders Partners range from Fortune 100corporations to small businesses and represent many industries, frommanufacturers and utilities to financial institutions and retailers, withoperations in all 50 states.