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Acquisition Pushes Bio-Rad's Q1 Revenues Up 31 Percent

This article has been updated to include commenst from a conference call and a stock quote.
NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Bio-Rad Laboratories announced after the close of the market on Tuesday that its first-quarter revenues rose 31 percent, due in large part to its acquisition of DiaMed Holding late last year.
The Hercules, Calif.-based firm reported revenues of $422.2 million for the three-month period ended March 31, compared to $322.5 million for the first quarter of 2007. Excluding the revenue contribution from DiaMed, which was $62.7 million during the quarter, and currency translation, Bio-Rad’s revenues increased 4.5 percent year over year.
Bio-Rad acquired DiaMed, a developer of blood-typing reagents and screening tools, in early October in a transaction worth approximately 477 million Swiss francs ($405.8 million).
Sales for the firm’s life science segment increased 9.2 percent to $154.6 million, while clinical diagnostics sales rose 48.4 percent. Excluding DiaMed’s contribution, diagnostics sales were up 13.1 percent, said Bio-Rad.
The firm said that capital instrument sales in its life sciences segment were “down slightly” in the first quarter due to reduced spending among academic and biopharmaceutical customers.

“We don't really see this as lost opportunities, but more deferred opportunities and are fairly confident that that won't be something we see through the end of the year,” Brad Crutchfield, vice president of the life sciences business, said during the firm’s conference call.

“Our biopharma, our for-profit customers, were fairly conservative in terms of ... purchasing and, in general, we've seen a cycle over the last two or three years with the sort of traditionally government-sponsored research, of researchers being a little bit conservative in the first quarter and kind of holding back on their budget and purchases,” he added.

Bio-Rad’s net income dipped slightly to $26.5 million, or $.96 per share, from $27 million, or $.99 per share. The firm’s profit in Q1 2008 includes $6.7 million of amortization and purchase accounting adjustments associated with the DiaMed acquisition.
The company’s R&D spending climbed 14.3 percent to $37.5 million from $32.8 million, while its SG&A costs jumped 29.6 percent to $139.7 million from $107.8 million.
Bio-Rad finished the quarter with $129.5 million in cash and cash equivalents.
“Our outlook for 2008 remains unchanged from the guidance we provided in February,” said CFO Christine Tsingos during the call. “That is, for top line, currency-neutral, organic growth to be in the mid-to-high single-digits and closer to the high teens when we include the additional DiaMed sales.”
Shares of Bio-Rad were up 4.6 percent at $88.88 in early Wednesday trade on the American Stock Exchange.

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