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Edwards Lifesciences Enters Into Agreement To Acquire CardiAQ

by Lauren Dubinsky, Senior Reporter | July 10, 2015
IRVINE, Calif., July 10, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Edwards Lifesciences Corporation (NYSE: EW), the global leader in the science of heart valves and hemodynamic monitoring, today announced that it has agreed to acquire CardiAQ Valve Technologies, Inc., a privately held company and developer of a transcatheter mitral valve replacement system.

"Edwards' primary strategy is to create valuable therapies that transform patient care. We believe the acquisition and integration of CardiAQ will advance our development of a transformational therapy for patients with mitral valve disease who aren't well-served today," said Michael A. Mussallem, Edwards' chairman and CEO. "While still early in the development of this therapy, the progress of the team of employees and clinicians working on our FORTIS mitral replacement system has reinforced our confidence in a catheter-based approach. We believe the experiences and technologies of FORTIS and CardiAQ are complementary and that this combination will enable important advancements for patients."

CardiAQ has received a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) approval to conduct an early feasibility study of up to 20 patients, and also plans to initiate a CE Mark study in Europe.

"CardiAQ is proud of our pioneering efforts in the early development of this transcatheter mitral valve therapy conceived by cardiac surgeon Arshad Quadri, M.D. We believe our technology, which incorporates multiple delivery approaches with a single valve, shows great promise for patients," said Rob Michiels, chief executive officer of CardiAQ.

"We look forward to joining Edwards, whose experience and leadership as a developer of breakthrough therapies for heart valve disease will advance our work," said J. Brent Ratz, co-founder, president and chief operating officer of CardiAQ.

The purchase price is up to $400 million, including $350 million in cash at closing, and the remainder payable upon achievement of a European regulatory milestone. The transaction remains subject to customary closing conditions. Edwards expects that this acquisition will be slightly dilutive to 2015 earnings per share. The company will provide updated financial guidance for 2015 when second quarter earnings are released on July 28.

As an update to the temporary pause in the FORTIS program, working closely with its global clinical investigators, Edwards recently completed its review and has reached agreement on protocol revisions to re-start enrollment.

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