Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (NYSE: TMO) will spend at least $145 million to buy handheld spectrometer maker Ahura Scientific.
The Waltham, Mass.-based lab equipment and services provider said it agreed to acquire Ahura for $145 million in cash plus a possible earn-out payment if Ahura meets certain 2010 financial targets. Ahura makes portable chemical detection devices designed for use outside of the lab.
Thermo Fisher said the deal broadens its portfolio of portable analytical devices. Wilmington, Mass.-based Ahura, which employs about 120 workers and posted sales of about $45 million last year, makes spectroscopy devices used by military and civilian rescue workers, pharmaceutical companies and consumer health firms. Its Raman and Fourier-transform infrared instruments complement the Thermo Scientific line of portable X-ray fluorescence elemental analyzers, according to a press release.
The deal fits into Thermo Fisher‘s focus on broadening the applications for its core mass spectrometry business. In December, CEO Marc Casper told MassDevice that the company was looking for opportunities to take that business beyond its traditional lab research market.
"What we have been very focused on is taking what has historically been a research tool — proteomics research is where a lot of these instruments are used and we have a very special reputation there — we’ve been taking these instruments and putting them into more routine applications," Casper said. "So that you’re seeing the adoption of mass spec in food safety applications, you’re seeing it in clinical applications, you’re seeing it in environmental applications and you’re seeing a much more widespread use a of mass spectrometers in general."
The deal is expected to close during the first quarter and will see Ahura folded into Thermo Fisher’s analytical technologies segment.