Lumibird to Acquire Ellex’s Laser and Ultrasound Business

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LANNION, France—Lumibird (Paris:LBIRD), a leading European laser technology company, has signed an agreement with the Australian company Ellex Medical Lasers to acquire Ellex’s laser and ultrasound business for 100 million Australian dollars (approximately €62 million). This acquisition will create a world leader for laser and ultrasound technologies for the diagnosis and treatment of ocular diseases. Under the transaction agreed on December 23, 2019, the Lumibird Group will acquire all of Ellex’s laser and ultrasound activities, with pro forma revenues of AUD 65.5 million based on the year ended June 30, 2019. The assets acquired include the Ellex brand, the R&D and production site in Adelaide and the commercial subsidiaries based in Australia, Japan, the U.S., France and Germany. For the year ended June 30, 2019, the laser and ultrasound segment recorded a AUD 9.5 million EBITDA, excluding head office costs (AUD 5.2 million for the consolidated group, with about 75 percent estimated for the laser and ultrasound segment).

Lumibird said in a statement that the combination of its medical activities through its subsidiary, Quantel Medical, with those of Ellex offers “strong potential for growth and value creation,” due to three main factors:

· Product synergies with complimentary features in terms of the pathologies addressed and comprehensive segmentation covering the various categories adapted for all markets;

· Commercial synergies, with Ellex directly handling 75 percent of its sales, while Quantel Medical sells primarily through its strong network of distributors. Their geographical positionings are also highly complementary, with Ellex particularly well-established in Japan and the U.S. and Quantel Medical covering Europe;

· A scale effect, resulting from the alliance between two companies that are already leaders in their markets, which will notably further strengthen their joint R&D capabilities.

Marc Le Flohic, chairman and CEO of Lumibird, commented “To truly create a difference in the lives of as many people affected by laser treatable blindness as possible, it is vital for companies such as Quantel Medical and Ellex to come together in order to reach a critical mass and make the most of their respective strengths; be that in diagnostic devices such as ultrasound or in treatments based on laser products.”

Maria Maielli, CEO of Ellex Medical Lasers, said “The proposed sale of the Ellex Lasers & Ultrasound business to Lumibird, which includes our state of the art manufacturing facilities in Adelaide, Australia highlights the value of our brand, the dedication of our employees, the strategic importance of our global sales and distribution network, and the many doctors and patients we serve. Lumibird will make an excellent strategic fit for Ellex’s market leading range of lasers and ultrasound to treat a range of important eye diseases.”

Jean-Marc Gendre, CEO of Quantel Medical, added “Quantel Medical and Ellex know one another very well, which will facilitate their integration. The two companies have complementary assets, with strong brands and ophthalmic market expertise. Their alliance will enable us to offer a wider range of products across all levels of pricing in order to better meet clients’ diverse needs.”

The acquisition will be submitted to Ellex’s shareholders for approval at a general meeting to be held during the first half of 2020, with completion to occur mid-2020. It will be financed partly through equity and bank debt. Lumibird’s acquisition of Ellex’s laser and ultrasound activities has been approved by the boards of directors of both groups, and Ellex’s board of directors unanimously recommends that Ellex’s shareholders approve the operation with Lumibird.

The new Lumibird’s medical branch extended in this way is targeting €90 million of revenues by 2021, with an EBITDA margin of 15 percent. Lumibird’s medical business recorded €33.6 million of revenues and an EBITDA margin of 10.6 percent in 2018.