The Tecan Group announced the acquisition of US-based SPEware Corporation (SPEware) to further expand Tecan's dedicated solutions offering into a new market segment. SPEware is a leading provider for mass spectrometry sample preparation solutions, with a focus on the North American market. SPEware will become a part of Tecan's Life Sciences Business, leveraging Tecan's global presence, customer base and strong position serving the market with automation platforms optimized for sample preparation for mass spectrometry analysis. With over 70% of revenues generated with smart consumables, the acquisition of SPEware will further expand Tecan's overall recurring revenues.
The base purchase consideration of USD 50.0 million (CHF 49.0 million) will be fully paid in cash and represents a valuation of approximately three times fiscal year 2016 sales of SPEware, while SPEware's EBITDA margin is exceeding Tecan's level. An additional earn-out consideration of up to USD 10.0 million (CHF 9.8 million) will be payable subject to the achievement of certain performance-related targets over the next two years. The transaction is expected to be immediately accretive to earnings per share (EPS) before transaction-related amortization. The closing of the transaction is anticipated within the coming weeks. Hence, Tecan does not expect a significant impact of the acquisition on its 2016 financial results.
Tecan CEO Dr. David Martyr commented: "The entire SPEware team has done a great job of developing and commercializing their proprietary solid phase extraction technology. With SPEware's current focus on North America, we are excited about the opportunity to leverage Tecan's global sales and service infrastructure to build on that momentum and further accelerate growth. This transaction follows very much the rationale of our acquisition of IBL International in 2014, which supported our evolution into a solutions business for dedicated applications. With SPEware's consumable and dedicated instrument offering, we can now expand our solution offering into the sample preparation for mass spectrometry market, complementing the market for specialty immunoassays served by IBL International. We very much look forward to welcoming the SPEware team into Tecan."
Phil Dimson, CEO and founder of SPEware, said: "We couldn't be more excited to join with the Tecan Group as this combination adds significant synergistic value for our customers and employees. Tecan's global market presence as a leader in laboratory automation platforms, including in our core market, is the perfect complement to SPEware's smart consumables and devices for mass spectrometry sample preparation solutions."
A provider for mass spectrometry sample preparation solutions
SPEware provides advanced sample preparation solutions to analytical laboratories, by combining smart chemistry consumables with dedicated instruments and modules to make liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) workflows more efficient. The overall market for these extraction technologies expands with a mid single-digit percentage rate per year. SPEware has clearly outgrown the market in recent years, due to its differentiated product offering and to the underlying market trend of adoption of automated solid phase extraction as the preferred sample preparation technique for high complexity tests.
SPEware's clients are mostly large reference labs and specialized laboratories in North America that predominantly use SPEware's solutions for toxicology testing and other analyses of complex sample matrices such as urine or saliva. Separation of targeted analytes from complex matrix components prior to injection onto the LC-MS offers numerous advantages including improved assay robustness and less instrument maintenance. SPEware's proprietary micro-particulate sorbent consumables for solid phase extraction offer important advantages, including higher selectivity, reproducible separations and overall data improvement. Workflows are also more automation friendly which offers the additional potential of integrating SPEware's automated positive pressure processors into Tecan's liquid handling workstations.
Established almost 20 years ago, SPEware is based in Baldwin Park, California (USA), and has over 60 employees. The company operations are vertically integrated with product development, columns packing, molding operation and the manufacturing of dedicated hardware devices.