Genzyme Selling Genetic Lab Unit for $925 Million
U.S. biotechnology company Genzyme has agreed to sell its genetic testing business to Laboratory Corp of America Holdings for $925 million in cash, reports Reuters. Genzyme said its plan to divest two other units — diagnostic products and pharmaceutical intermediates — remains on track. Proceeds from the transactions may be used to fund the second half its $2 billion stock buyback. The price garnered for Genzyme Genetics is roughly three times the unit''s 2009 revenue of $371 million. As part of its five-point plan, Genzyme also said it planned to cut costs, and on Friday the company said it had begun to lay off employees. It did not say how many people it is letting go, but The Boston Globe said the company plans to cut 1,000 employees worldwide over 15 months. Genzyme plans to announce details of the cost-cutting later this week. LabCorp is buying the entire genetics testing business, including all testing services, technology, intellectual property rights and testing laboratories. LabCorp also committed to offer jobs to the unit''s nearly 1,900 employees, including senior management, upon closing, Genzyme said.