Mars, Incorporated has entered into an agreement to acquire Heska Corporation, a manufacturer of diagnostic and specialty solutions for veterinary practitioners, in a deal worth approximately $1.3 billion (€1.19 billion).
Mars, which owns the Pedigree and Whiskas pet care brands, is paying $120 per share to acquire the company, which represents a premium of approximately 38% over Heska's 60-calendar day volume weighted average price, it said in a statement.
According to the company, the acquisition will enable Mars Petcare's Science & Diagnostics division to 'expand its diagnostic offerings' and promote point-of-care veterinary diagnostics to the global pet healthcare community.
'Transformative Veterinary Care'
"We look forward to welcoming Heska to Science & Diagnostics as we share the belief that diagnostic innovation is a critical enabler to providing transformative veterinary care," commented Nefertiti Greene, president, Mars Petcare, Science & Diagnostics. "This comprehensive diagnostic offering will mean broader coverage across diagnostic products, services, and technology, and will accelerate R&D for novel solutions."
The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2023, once it has completed customary closing conditions, including Heska's shareholders and regulatory approval.
'An Incredible Milestone'
Kevin Wilson, chief executive and president of Heska, described the announcement as "a great testament to the quality of our Heska family - we are small, but our people and their creativity, execution, expertise, and value-creation have made us exceptional.
"Working together, Heska's innovations will more quickly reach more veterinarians to help more pet families live better, healthier, longer lives. That's been our mission for over a decade and today is an incredible milestone towards realising it."