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US: Abbott wins antitrust approval to buy Alere with conditions

 |  September 28, 2017

Abbott Laboratories has won US antitrust approval to buy Alere on condition that it sell two point-of-care medical testing businesses, the Federal Trade Commission said on Thursday, September 28.

Canada also announced on Thursday that it had approved the proposed transaction on similar terms.

Abbott first offered to buy Alere in February 2016, but the deal ran into trouble because of issues related to the diagnostic maker’s accounting and sales practices. The company finally agreed to buy Alere in April for about US$5.3 billion, down from an initial US$5.8 billion offer.

Alere also agreed Thursday to pay more than US$13 million to resolve Securities and Exchange Commission charges that it committed accounting fraud and made improper payments to foreign officials.

To win the US antitrust approval, the FTC required Abbott to sell two types of point-of-care medical testing device businesses, which can be used in doctors’ offices, hospitals and homes.

The companies agreed to divest a blood gas testing system that measures the oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood and a cardiac marker system used to determine quickly if a patient is having a heart attack or congestive heart failure.

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