More Consolidation in the Clinical Laboratory Industry, as Quest Diagnostics Agrees to Pay $570 Million to Acquire Solstas Lab Partners

When completed, this acquisition will give Quest Diagnostics a major laboratory presence in the backyard of competitor Laboratory Corporation of America

Another big lab domino fell in the continuing consolidation of the clinical laboratory testing industry. This time it was Solstas Lab Partners, which announced that it would be acquired by Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE:DGX).

The agreement was announced by both companies earlier this week. Quest Diagnostics will pay $570 million to acquire Solstas, which is based in Greensboro, North Carolina. Solstas provides medical laboratory testing services to clients in nine states across the South. Quest Diagnostics says it expects to close the sale by the middle of this year, subject to the usual regulatory reviews of such transactions. (more…)

Cincinnati’s Health Alliance Dissolves, Was a Pioneer in Consolidation of Clinical Pathology Laboratory Testing

Its Laboratory Alliance Lab Outreach Business was Sold in 2003

Back in the mid-1990s, Cincinnati was the location for a multi-hospital clinical laboratory consolidation that was one of the first and biggest of its time. Now, all but one of the original organizing hospitals of The Health Alliance of Greater Cincinnati have gone their separate ways.

The original goal was for the alliance to help its not-for-profit health members compete economically. Now this story may turn out to be a cautionary tale about the perils of alliances where health entities share operations but not governance.

Back in 2003, financial struggles of The Health Alliance contributed to its decision to sell ownership of the outreach business of Alliance Laboratory Services, the consolidated clinical laboratory organization, to LabOne, Inc. LabOne’s ownership of this medical laboratory later passed to Quest Diagnostics, Incorporated (NYSE: DGX) when LabOne was itself acquired by Quest Diagnostics in 2005. (See The Dark Report, August 22, 2005, “Quest Pays $934 Million In Acquisition of LabOne.”)


Merger of Spectrum Laboratory Network and Carilion Labs Creates Big Clinical Laboratory Company

Carilion Clinic and Novant Health will continue to own equity in the new clinical laboratory company

It was big news in the clinical laboratory industry yesterday when Spectrum Laboratory Network of Greensboro, North Carolina announced a merger with Carilion Labs of Roanoke, Virginia. The combined enterprise will have annual revenue of approximately $300 million and immediately becomes one of the nation’s larger clinical laboratory companies.

As announced by the parties involved, Carilion Clinic will hold a 33% ownership interest in the new laboratory company. Novant Health, which holds a minority interest in Spectrum Laboratory Network, will continue as an equity owner and will have a seat on the new board of directors, once the two laboratory organizations are merged into one company.


Spectrum Laboratory Network Sells to Welsh Carson for $230 Million

Acquisition is a deal between two private equity firms

Spectrum Laboratory Network of Greensboro, North Carolina, will be acquired by Welsh, Carson, Anderson, & Stowe. Investment funds managed by Apax Partners are the sellers and the purchase price is $230 million. It is the highest dollar value acquisition of a clinical laboratory during 2009.

The acquisition agreement was announced at the end of last week. It brings Welsh, Carson back into the laboratory testing industry for the first time since 2007. During this decade, Welsh, Carson held an equity ownership in LabOne, Inc., which was based in Kansas City, Missouri and was building a fast-growing business in medical laboratory testing.