Canada's Nordion, AECL settle lawsuit; sign new supply deal

Tue Aug 20, 2013 9:18am EDT

Aug 20 (Reuters) - Canada's Nordion Inc, a medical isotope provider, said it settled a five-year-old lawsuit with its main supplier, Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd (AECL), and would receive C$15 million in settlement of its C$244 million claim.

Nordion has struggled to find an alternative supplier for molybdenum-99, the isotope at the center of the dispute. The company processes the isotope to produce radioactive tracers used in medical imaging.

The two parties also signed an agreement under which the state-owned nuclear energy firm would supply Nordion with the isotope starting immediately and running through October 2016.

Nordion had hoped to compel AECL to pay damages or complete two new reactors that were set to replace the aging National Research Universal reactor in Chalk River, Ontario, which supplied the isotope.

However the project was scrapped in 2008 before construction could finish and Nordion filed a lawsuit claiming C$1.6 billion in damages.

Nordion said on Tuesday AECL has released its claim of about C$47 million for arbitration costs.

An arbitration panel had rejected Nordion's claim for damages last September after which it suspend its dividend. In January, the company said it was exploring strategic alternatives.

Nordion's shares closed at C$7.70 Monday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. The stock has risen about 19 percent so far this year.

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