Harvard Bioscience has acquired certain assets of Amersham Biosciences’ 1D electrophoresis business, including the Hoefer brand name, for approximately $5.3 million in cash, the companies announced this week. Amersham will retain its 2D gel product lines, which include the Multiphor, IPGPhor, and DALT systems and consumables; and the Ettan 2D gel analysis software. These products will continue to be sold under the Amersham brand name.
“ This agreement enables us to focus our proteomics area on sample preparation, protein expression, and protein identification as part of the Ettan design for integrated, high-throughput proteomics,” said Andrew Carr, president of discovery systems for Amersham Biosciences, in a statement.
The future of Amersham’s proteomics and protein separations businesses was called into question last month when General Electric announced its intention to acquire Amersham PLC — Amersham Biosciences’ parent company — for $9.5 billion (see PM 10-17-03). However, at that time the prevailing opinion was that the businesses would not be sold off. First-dimensional electrophoresis is usually not used for proteomics applications.
Harvard Bioscience has the rights to apply the Hoefer brand across its offerings, including its existing lines of electrophoresis products. Hugh Douglas, who has been with the Hoefer product line since 1979, will manage the Hoefer business for Harvard Bioscience, and will report to David Parr, managing director of Harvard Bioscience’s Biochrom business.
Harvard Bioscience and Amersham Biosciences have also entered into a long-term, global distribution agreement for at least five years with an option to renew longer-term, under which Amersham will continue to distribute and support 1D electrophoresis products manufactured by Harvard Bioscience under the Amersham brand. Additionally, Harvard Bioscience will develop new products for Amersham, with Amersham committing to purchase certain volumes during the first three years.