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UPDATE: Life Technologies Takes Majority Stake in GeneArt

This article has been updated to include comments and more detail from a Geneart official.

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) –GeneArt said today that a German subsidiary of Life Technologies has purchased 58 percent of its outstanding shares, making Life Tech the majority shareholder of the Regensburg, Germany-based gene synthesis firm.

The company said that its management team and venture capital investors EquiNet EarlyStage Capital and S-REFIT AG have agreed to sell their shares to Applied Biosystems Deutschland GmbH, the German subsidiary of Life Technologies.

The agreement gives Applied Biosystems Deutschland approximately 58 percent of GeneArt's shares.

In addition, GeneArt said that Applied Biosystems Deutschland is planning a voluntary public tender offer for the remaining shares. A Geneart official told GenomeWeb Daily News via e-mail that the tender offer would be made April 13 and is expected to close around May 25.

In addition, the official said that "for the forseeable future after close, Life Technologies plans to maintain operations at the current site and intends to invest into the Regensburg site in various areas of Geneart's current business." All 180 Geneart employees are expected to become employees of Life Tech.