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Qiagen Shares Rise on Acquisition Rumors

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Shares of Qiagen rose around 6 percent in Friday trade on the Nasdaq after rumors circulated in Europe that French drugmaker Sanofi-Aventis was mulling a €14.50 ($20.29) per share bid to acquire the firm.

Neither firm would comment on the rumors.

The rumored acquisition price represents a 26 percent premium over Qiagen's Thursday closing price of $16.05. In Friday afternoon trade, Qiagen's shares were up 6 percent at $17.01.

In a research note published this morning, Thomas Weisel Partners analyst Peter Lawson said that the Paris-based pharmaceuticals and vaccine giant is an "unlikely suitor" for Qiagen.

"[I]f the bid is true, we would expect it to attract other bidders from Pharma," he wrote. "However, we would reiterate that Sanofi seems an unlikely acquirer with no footprint in the life sciences space."

Qiagen's primary focus is on the sample preparation and molecular diagnostics markets, two areas in which Sanofi-Aventis does not have a presence.

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