Acquisitions, Mergers & PartnershipsAM IndustryBioprinting

CELLINK acquires Discover Echo for its innovative microscopy technology

Deal worth $110 million

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CELLINK has entered into an agreement with the shareholders of Discover Echo Inc to acquire all assets of the company for a total sum of $110 million. Approximately eleven percent of the purchase price will be paid in newly issued shares of series B in CELLINK and the remaining part will be paid cash.

“The world of microscopy is going through a massive transformation, and we are very excited to lead the way forward together with Discover Echo. With this strategic acquisition of Discover Echo, we further strengthen our position within our Biosciences segment. With Discover Echo’s revolutionary microscopy technology and disruptive product line, we further complement our existing bioconvergence products and capture strong cross-selling synergies. We are combining our strong, purpose-driven growth agenda with trailblazing technologies for the sake of improving health all around the world. CELLINK is today the leading company in the world providing the most complete bioconvergence offering. This acquisition further exemplifies our vision and mission to be the complete solutions provider for our customers in the field of tissue engineering, cell line development, multi-omics, and diagnostics,” said Erik Gatenholm, CEO, CELLINK.

Discover Echo is an innovative and revolutionary American company focusing on the development, manufacturing, and sales of patented and unique hybrid microscopes that easily transform between Upright and Inverted configurations, merging the capabilities of multiple instruments into one. Discover Echo is expected to grow 65% in 2021 and generate approximately $20 million of revenue with a double-digit EBITDA margin.

Discover Echo

Founded in 2013, by Eugene Cho, Discover Echo, the company is headquartered in San Diego, California, and has one European subsidiary in the UK, with around 50 employees worldwide. The company’s primary market is North America, but it has also gained a strong presence in Europe and Asia. Discover Echo has revolutionized the market by offering hybrid automated microscopes with greater versatility than other systems on the market. The company has significantly improved the usability of their microscopes by replacing traditional eyepieces with ultra-high-resolution touchscreen displays and offering a unique software app that advances the workflow of acquiring, sharing, and analyzing images. Discover Echo expects to strengthen its product portfolio further in the near future to obtain even stronger synergies with existing products within the CELLINK Group.

“We take great pride in our products, offering our customers the most progressive instruments within their class. In our company’s young history, we have already established a strong market position. This has been achieved thanks to our dedicated team who has continuously pushed to redefine microscopy and imaging for today’s customers. We are extremely excited to join the CELLINK Group. Together we will continue to disrupt the live-cell imaging and analysis market and deliver on the Group’s vision to create and redefine the future of medicine,” said Eugene Cho, Founder and CEO, Discover Echo.

The Acquisition is in line with CELLINK’s commercial, bioconvergence strategy, complementing CELLINK’s product offering through cutting-edge and disruptive products used in academics and industrial laboratories around the world. Discover Echo will continue as a standalone company, part of CELLINK’s business area Biosciences.

Discover Echo is revolutionizing the century-old microscopy industry with the world’s first and only hybrid (transformable) microscopes. Legacy microscope manufacturers offer complex instrumentation, consisting of multiple different hardware accessories and software modules that can only be operated by well-trained microscopy experts. Most life science labs own two types of microscopes: Upright (for viewing glass slides) and Inverted (for viewing live samples in Petri dishes and well plates). Discover Echo’s hybrid microscopes offer the capabilities of both Upright and Inverted, in a single high-quality instrument, eliminating the need for two separate systems. Furthermore, Discover Echo is redefining the industry when it comes to user experience. Their products integrate ultra-high-resolution touch-screen displays and native software, allowing the user to take superior, crystal clear images for world-class scientific publications. The connectivity of their instruments permits for easy sharing of images, improving the collaboration and efficiency of research teams.

As of today, the CELLINK Group offers a myriad of products used by cell culture researchers (e.g., in bioprinting, cell line development, or live-cell imaging). Virtually, all of these customers could benefit from Discover Echo’s products. This opens up a potential for cross-selling and product bundling, that could help grow multiple product lines and increase the usage of consumables offered by the CELLINK Group. Such product bundlings will bring the Group closer to offering complete workflows.

Discover Echo has a large growth potential in the bioprocessing industry where the CELLINK Group is a well-known supplier and has the ability to accelerate Discover Echo’s penetration in this sector. Discover Echo’s products showcase the potential of combining high-end optical technologies with disruptive software approaches, for the sake of biological breakthroughs. Such combinations can have a lasting impact on biomedical research at biopharma companies, academic institutions, and hospitals. It is anticipated that these intuitive software approaches can be transferred to multiple other product lines within the CELLINK Group.

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Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites and, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

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