POC Juggernaut Forged with Alere Purchase

POC Juggernaut Forged with Alere Purchase

Abbott is marking out point-of-care as an area that it can compete and win in with its purchase of Waltham, MA-based Alere, Inc.  This should not be surprising as POC in some areas, such as infectious disease, is growing revenue at one and one-half times the global IVD market. POC testing is a target area for IVD companies because of better-than-average revenue growth in most areas.  We think that Abbott was already a significant competitor in point-of-care testing, but the purchase of Alere puts the company into revenue leadership in non-glucose point of care testing and a top contender for all POC testing in 2016. 

Abbott Laboratories announced Monday it had  agreed to acquire diagnostic-test company Alere Inc. for $5.8 billion.  Alere has been a leading competitor in IVD for a decade; it was previously called Inverness Medical Innovations.  The company itself had grown through a number of large acquisitions in in vitro diagnostics, and developed a solid product list in near patient testing.    Alere had revenues of 2.5 billion in 2015.   

Alere’s products and services are involved in tests for infectious disease, cardiology, oncology, drugs of abuse and women’s health.    The company is the largest pregnancy test maker and produces OTC drug tests, cholesterol tests.  Infectious disease is a key category for Alere, and we suspects that this part of the company is one of the more attractive aspects of the purchase.   Recent acquisitions had boosted Alere; the company acquired Epocal, Inc., a provider of blood gas and electrolyte testing technologies in 2013.  In October 2011, Alere completed its takeover of Axis-Shield plc, a Scottish company offering cardiac marker and other testing.      

In January 2014, Alere announced the availability of the CE Marked Alere i Influenza A & B test, a molecular test that can detect and differentiate influenza A and B virus in less than 15 minutes.    The test uses a nasal swab from a patient showing signs and symptoms of the flu and provides results in as little as 15 minutes.   

Currently, Abbot’s  core POC segment offering is  the i-STAT instrument, which assays various analytes and provides multi-analyte cartridges such as blood gases, cardiac markers and coagulation predominantly used in critical care or triage, emergency, and pre-surgical settings at hospitals. Recent development on the i-STAT instrument has focused on critical care applications: wireless transmission capabilities for instrument test results and an agreement with BG Medicine for the development of another cardiac biomarker (Galectin-3).

Kalorama’s full study contains market sizing and growth for every segment of POC IVD and examines the competitors in the market. The firm’s report, The World Market for Point of Care Diagnostics can be found at: http://www.kaloramainformation.com/Point-Care-POC-9030928/