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Merck Purchases Millipore for $7.6 billion

Merck KGaA announced on Sunday that it will purchase Millipore, a supplier of life science tools and equipment to the biotech industries, for $7.6 billion (5.3 billion euros).

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Merck KGaA announced on Sunday that it will purchase Millipore, a supplier of life science tools and equipment to the biotech industries, for $7.6 billion (5.3 billion euros).

Under an agreement reached by the two sides, Merck will acquire all of Millipore's outstanding shares for 107 dollars per share in cash. The deal snatches Millipore away from rival bidder Thermo Fisher Scientific, who apparently offered less than $95 a share for the company.

The pharmaceutical giant, based in  Darmstadt, Germany, said it expects to close the deal in the second half of 2010.

The $7.2-billion price tag includes $890-million-worth of long-term debt Millipore had as of Dec.31. Merck will use available cash and a bridge loan provided by Bank of America Corp., BNP Paribas and Commerzbank AG to finance the purchase.

Merck said it will maintain Millipore's Billerica, Mass., headquarters and combine that location with its U.S. chemicals headquarters and retain Millipore's senior management. Merck plans to replace part of the facility by issuing bonds.