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Cell Biosciences Buys Brightwell Technologies for $9M

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Cell Biosciences today announced it has acquired micro-flow imaging firm Brightwell Technologies for $9 million in cash.

In connection with the acquisition, Cell Biosciences also raised $13 million.

Brightwell's technology is used to detect particles and aggregates in protein-based therapeutics. As the US Food and Drug Administration's interest in protein aggregates rises, Brightwell's products have seen widespread adoption by the world's largest pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms, Cell Biosciences said.

In late 2010, Santa Clara, Calif.-based Cell Biosciences bought Convergent Bioscience for $12 million, which makes imaging capillary electrophoresis products for protein characterization. Brightwell's technology targets the same customers as Convergent's and today's deal "is expected to fuel additional market penetration for both product lines," Cell Biosciences said in a statement.

Founded in 2001, Ottawa, Ontario-based Brightwell employs 30 people. Its 2011 revenues are expected to be around $5 million.

The deal also is the fourth acquisition by Cell Biosciences in the past year-and-a-half. In addition to Convergent, it bought Protein Forest and Alpha Innotech in late 2009. Tim Harkness, CEO of Cell Biosciences, said the Brightwell purchase "represents another important step in our plan to build a highly focused and differentiated protein analysis pure-play."

Cell Biosciences also announced that in connection with the acquisition it raised $13 million in a second tranche of its Series F preferred stock financing. The financing was led by Essex Woodlands Health Ventures. Existing investors, including Novo A/S, Domain Associates, Latterell Venture Partners, Royal Bank of Canada, the Vertical Group, and Lansing Brown Investments, also participated.