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Alcon picks up WaveLight

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Ophthalmic device maker Alcon expands its refractive laser business via the $90 million purchase of German firm WaveLight, announced July 16. WaveLight's Allegretto refractive eye laser "offers the fastest ablation speed on the market today," Alcon notes. The purchase will "provide additional clinical solutions and laser technology to better support our cataract and refractive customers," the firm explains. Alcon, which offers the Ladar6000 excimer laser and CustomCornea wavefront system for custom ablation procedures, issued a safety alert on the system in February and has initiated corrective action to address the potential for "central islands" following custom myopia laser procedures (1"The Gray Sheet" April 30, 2007, p. 6). Wachovia analyst Larry Biegelsen notes in a July 16 report that he expects Alcon to adopt Allegretto as its flagship eye laser following the acquisition. The deal also makes Alcon the second largest laser refractive franchise behind Advanced Medical Optics, Biegelsen says. Under the terms of the deal, Alcon will pay about $13.80 per share for WaveLight, a roughly 15% premium over its July 13 closing price of $12.00...

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