Quidel has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Ortho Clinical Diagnostics for an equity value of about $6bn.

Under the terms of the deal, the company will pay $24.68 per Ortho’s share of common stock, including $1.75bn in cash.

To finance the deal, Quidel will use a combination of cash and newly issued shares in the combined company.

Ortho provides new technology and tools to hospital networks, clinical laboratories, hospitals, and blood banks globally to ensure quick, accurate, and reliable test results.

The deal will combine the technologies and platforms of both the companies.

The combined company will provide expanded access to immunohematology, immunoassay, clinical chemistry, molecular diagnostics, point-of-care diagnostics offerings and donor screening.

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It will also meet patient testing requirements across all points of the care continuum that include urgent care centres, hospitals, physicians’ offices, reference labs, and at-home / retail locations, Quidel said.

Ortho chairman and CEO Chris Smith said: “By bringing together Quidel’s point-of-care diagnostics with Ortho’s vast global reach, there is a substantial opportunity to capitalise on the cross-selling opportunities, move into attractive adjacent markets, and accelerate innovative product expansion and the development of molecular technologies.

“Together, we will continue to advance life-changing diagnostic solutions to improve patient outcomes and deliver economic benefits to the healthcare system.”

Quidel stated that the acquisition will accelerate the product growth, diversifies product portfolio and deepens innovation pipeline.

It also noted that the transaction is subject to approval by shareholders of both companies and customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

It is anticipated to be concluded in the first half of next year.

Quidel president and CEO Douglas Bryant said: “The combination with Ortho will help solidify Quidel as a leader in the diagnostics industry, bringing together innovative, complementary products, solutions, and services that enhance the health and well-being of patients across the globe.”

In July this year, the company secured CE mark for its Savanna multiplex molecular analyser and Savanna RVP4 Assay (Respiratory Viral Panel-4).