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Abbott Buys Advanced Medical Optics for $1.36 Billion

by Lynn Shapiro, Writer | January 12, 2009
Abbott Laboratories said it would acquire Advanced Medical Optics Inc. for $1.36 billion, boosting Abbott's already formidable presence in the eye care business.

Abbott will pay $22 per share in cash for AMO, more than double the share's closing price last Friday of $8.85. This is considered to be an inexpensive acquisition for Abbott, considering Advanced Medical Optics was trading at about $22 several months ago.

"Abbott will immediately become a global leader in vision," said vice president John M. Capek. "The business is poised for long-term growth, driven by advances in refractive surgery technologies, including Lasik, and an aging global population," Capek added.

Advanced Medical is the world's largest company dealing in Lasik surgical devices, the second largest player in the cataract surgical-device market and third in contact-lens solutions.

The market for cataract surgery is expected to grow by approximately 50% in the next decade as the population ages, the company said.

Last week, Abbott also said it would team up with Liquidia Technologies, a nanotechnology company, to develop cancer drugs.