NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Shares of Gen-Probe closed up 9 percent on Wednesday after The Wall Street Journal reported on its website that a few bidders have emerged to buy the company.
The Journal cited people familiar with the bidding process in reporting that Novartis, Life Technologies, and Thermo Fisher Scientific have emerged as initial bidders. All three were listed as potential bidders by Bloomberg, when it reported last month that Gen-Probe had hired Morgan Stanley to seek a buyer.
The WSJ also had reported Wednesday that Thermo Fisher also is a leading contender to buy Phadia, a privately held allergy and autoimmunity testing firm that could fetch as much as $3 billion. Following that report, Thermo Fisher announced Thursday that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Phadia for €2.47 billion ($3.5 billion).
Gen-Probe recently reported first-quarter revenue growth of 6 percent to $143 million. It has a market cap of around $4.1 billion.
In early Thursday trade on the Nasdaq, shares of Gen-Probe pulled back 2 percent to $84.53.