Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Seeking Alpha: Did PacBio Just Sorta Sell Itself To Roche?

As a Roche (RHHBY.OB) shareholder, I've been waiting for a while for the company to do something with its life sciences research business, and its sequencing business in particular. The company took a well-known run at Illumina (ILMN) and made a lesser-publicized joint bid for Life Technologies (LIFE). With the options getting narrower, particularly with respect to systems that could be commercialized on a near-term basis, Roche made its move - signing a development and marketing agreement with Pacific Biosciences (PACB) covering sequencing, consumables, and related diagnostics products for the in vitro market.

I'd be curious to know if Roche has made any overtures toward Oxford Nanopore, but that's neither here nor there at this point. For Pacific Biosciences, this is a major public affirmation of the progress the company has made to recover from system performance and reliability problems that took a once-ballyhooed story to almost flirting with bankruptcy. PacBio has already been a great pick for me (having recommended the stock in an Alpha-Rich piece here), but I wouldn't assume that there is all there is left in the story.

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Did PacBio Just Sorta Sell Itself To Roche?

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