“March 6, 2000 Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News”

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Interesting things are afoot at Esoterix, Inc., the Austin, Texas-based parent company for six specialty laboratories. President and CEO Charles L Dufesche, M.D. recently left. The new CEO is James McClintic. Esoterix has plans to become a public company and has been shopping its IPO (initial public offering) among brokerage houses. Calls to Esoterix went unanswered as of press time.

There’s been lots of interest in the lab industry concerning Premier, Inc.’s attempts to enforce compliance with its national laboratory reference testing contract. For the latest developments in this ongoing story, lab executives should read a story in the February issue of CAP TODAY. It’s a well-balanced story about the pros and cons of Premier’s compliance efforts and how hospital laboratories are reacting to the situation.


Aetna, Inc. is not the only big healthcare company with an unwanted takeover offer. Eclipsys Corporation of Del Ray Beach, Florida made an unsolicited offer to purchase Shared Medical Systems, Inc. (SMS) last week. Although SMS shares were trading at $38.25, Eclipsys offered $67 per share, a premium of 75%. For the 12 months ended December 31, 1999, SMS reported revenues of $1.217 billion and diluted earnings per share of $2.80. This contrasts with Eclipsys’ reported revenues of $249 million and a fully diluted loss per share of $0.27. Eclipys’s offer is a case of the fish wanting to swallow the whale.


The Chairman and CEO of Eclipsys, Harvey J. Wilson, was formerly CEO at SMS. He left SMS in 1995 to form Eclipsys. In a public statement, SMS said “the proposal represents the most recent in a series of efforts by Harvey Wilson, the Chairman of Eclipsys, to cause SMS, in effect, to acquire his company, under circumstances in which he assumes management control.”


Diagnostics manufacturers are unhappy with the significant expense and lackluster results from supporting two lab association exhibit halls and national conventions every summer. Meetings between the diagnostics companies and CLMA and AACC have brought no resolution to the diagnostics companies’ plight. For obvious reasons, the two lab associations want to avoid a combined exhibit hall and national convention. THE DARK REPORT has learned that one of the first-rank diagnostic companies recently decided not to exhibit one of the two annual meetings this summer. If true, this may establish a precedent that other diagnostics companies will follow.


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