- Hologic announced it has entered into exclusive negotiations to buy French medtech SuperSonic Imagine, a specialist in ultrasound imaging based in Aix-en-Provence, for $85 million.
- With the acquisition, the Marlborough, Massachusetts company looks to gain entry into a global market for cart-based breast ultrasound technology, used increasingly to screen women with dense breast tissue, which Hologic estimates is worth $450 million.
- The price tag includes the purchase of outstanding shares plus warrants and options for $42 million. In addition, Hologic would repay SuperSonic Imagine’s $43 million in net debt.
Mammograms are the standard screening test for breast cancer and are sometimes recommended beginning at age 40 for women at average risk for the disease, though different organizations advise starting annual testing at age 45 or 50. Women with dense breast tissue are considered at higher risk for the disease.
The deal would give Hologic a breast health portfolio that spans screening, interventional and surgical products. The market for cart-based ultrasound equipment has been growing at a high-single-digit rate as the technology is increasingly used as an adjunct to mammography in women with dense breast tissue, Hologic said.
SuperSonic Imagine’s products are intended to complement the wireless, handheld ultrasound scanner called Viera that Hologic is commercializing through an agreement with Clarius Mobile Health, the company said.
The deal follows Hologic’s $85 million acquisition last year of Faxitron Bioptics, a maker of X-ray and other equipment used in the treatment of early-stage breast cancer, and $125 million deal to buy Focal Therapeutics, whose BioZorb implantable device marks the site where a breast tumor has been removed.
SuperSonic Imagine generated about $29 million in revenue in 2018. Hologic said less than 15% of revenue came from its largest market, the United States, providing an opportunity for future growth.
The acquisition is estimated to be less than 1 percent dilutive to Hologic’s non-GAAP earnings per share in fiscal 2020, the company said.
New federal legislation signed into law in February requires mammography providers to inform patients about their breast density and explain its significance. The law directs FDA to develop reporting language and ensure that mammography summaries provided to patients and their doctors include appropriate information.
In March, FDA issued a proposed rule aimed at bolstering oversight of mammography facilities, including the requirement that providers share breast density information in a letter to patients. The rule would also empower FDA to notify patients and healthcare professionals directly of a mammography facility’s quality violations in certain cases.
The American College of Radiology suggests higher-risk women, including those with dense breast tissue, receive supplemental screening with a contrast-enhanced breast MRI. For those who qualify for but cannot undergo MRI, ultrasound testing is recommended.