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Oxford's acquisition of MIR - What does it mean?

by Philip F. Jacobus, CEO | May 06, 2015
It was announced last week that Oxford Instruments Healthcare purchased Medical Imaging Resources for $24 million. Over the last few days, we have received a number of phone calls and emails about that deal.

Providers and vendors are all tracking this event. Some providers are wondering how it will affect their service. Some vendors wonder if it is going to be harder to compete and others wonder if it signals a change in the market. And, of course, there is a certain amount of jealousy expressed in the form of, "I do not think it is a good fit"

I cannot help a feeling of nostalgia about this transaction because when my close personal friend, Tom Freund, was searching for companies to acquire, it was yours truly who suggested Platinum. It is not easy to find a company that is independent but could still fit into a big corporation like Oxford. I have known Jeff Fall for a long time. He is a combination of Alan Greenspan and Steve Jobs. He brought together the Platinum group and he can converse with an executive team. I thought Platinum would be a good fit for the rather conservative Oxford culture. I guess I was right.

John Vartanian, who I will now affectionately refer to as the $24 million dollar man, deserves a lot of credit also. He started MIR in 1992. He bought out his partner, Dean Tangalakis, in 2007 and I do not think anybody at MIR works any harder than John. He works day or night, weekends and holidays included. If there was a problem, John dealt with it personally and always worked to keep his customers happy. If anybody deserves a home run, it is John Vartanian.

As for the synergy, it seems obvious to me.

From what I have heard in the market, both companies provide excellent service. As it happens, John rented a MRI to NYU Medical Center after Hurricane Sandy and I was scanned on it. Platinum has many satisfied clients that I know of.

There is no reason to believe that two companies that provided good service in the past will not provide good service in the future.

Both companies have different customer bases and now both customer bases are open to the offering that the other provides. If the only thing that happens is that Oxford provides service to MIR's fleet of systems, it has to add to the bottom line and allow the new company to provide better and faster service. It also allows the new Oxford to scale its business.

To me the real significance of this is that we have a major corporation that has a limited footprint in health care, investing in health care because they see it as a growth area.

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