Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire privately-owned ACEA Biosciences Inc. (ACEA), a developer of cutting-edge cell analysis instruments for life science research and clinical diagnostics, for $250 million in cash.
"Expanding our cell analysis footprint is a key strategic growth initiative," said Jacob Thaysen, president of Agilent's Life Sciences and Applied Markets Group. "Innovative approaches to cell analysis are driving market demand and leading to a better understanding of diseases and the discovery of potential therapeutics."
Since its inception in 2002, ACEA has launched two ground-breaking, highly differentiated platforms. ACEA is revolutionizing the field of flow cytometry with its high-performance, customizable line of NovoCyte® benchtop flow cytometers. ACEA's xCELLigence® instruments enable label-free, real-time monitoring of cell growth, cell function, and cellular responses to a variety of treatments, providing scientists information-rich cellular assays.
ACEA also has a CFDA approved and CE-IVD labelled cytometer configuration. ACEA's clinical flow cytometer, currently commercialized primarily in China, brings a unique opportunity with Agilent's Reagent Partnership business within Agilent's Diagnostics and Genomics Group which provides reagents for flow cytometry.
ACEA instruments are used worldwide in both academia and industry across a wide range of life science applications from basic research to clinical diagnostics including preclinical drug discovery and development, toxicology & safety pharmacology, and various disease studies.
"ACEA represents a unique opportunity for Agilent to expand its team and broaden its portfolio with highly complementary technology, increasing the relevance and impact we can have with our customers in the cell analysis space," said Todd Christian, Vice President & General Manager of Agilent's Cell Analysis Division. "We share the same passion around the need for and innovation of live-cell, kinetic, and label free approaches to cell analysis extending beyond traditional end-point measurements. Together, we will be able to offer a more comprehensive and compelling product portfolio to our collective customers."
"Agilent and ACEA are aligned with a common mission to provide innovative high-performance solutions that help our customers advance scientific discovery and improve healthcare," said Xiaobo Wang, President and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of ACEA. "We are excited for the opportunities that this unique combination will create for both our employees and our customers."
ACEA is headquartered in San Diego and has a large manufacturing and R&D footprint in Hangzhou, China.
Building Critical Mass in Cell Analysis
Agilent entered the cell analysis market in 2015 with the acquisition of Seahorse Bioscience, a leader in providing specialized instruments and live-cell, kinetic assays. Agilent Seahorse XF technology was a leap in the evolution of cellular metabolism analysis allowing researchers to investigate metabolism in live cells. In January 2018 Agilent broadened its portfolio of cell analysis solutions through the acquisition of Luxcel Biosciences. Luxcel's assays use soluble sensors to analyze metabolism, making them a perfect complement to Agilent's Seahorse XF technology, providing researchers with more options to analyze metabolism.
Founded in 2002, ACEA is a pioneer in the development and commercialization of high performance cell analysis platforms for life science research. ACEA's xCELLigence® Real-Time Cell Analysis instruments and NovoCyte® flow cytometers are used in pre-clinical drug discovery and development, toxicology, safety pharmacology, and basic academic research. More than 2,500 instruments have been placed globally and have been used in more than 1,800 peer-reviewed publications. For more information visit https://www.aceabio.com/.