| NEW YORK
NEW YORK May 21 Roche Holding AG
teamed up with Sigma-Aldrich Corp to make an
unsuccessful bid for Life Technologies Corp earlier
this year, people familiar with the matter said.
Life Tech, the genetic testing equipment maker that
announced a $13.6 billion sale to Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc
in April, also received a rival bid from "strategic
party A," according to Life Tech's filings with regulators on
Tuesday that detailed how the merger came together.
The sources confirmed party A was Sigma-Aldrich, a maker of
chemicals for research laboratories. They asked not to be named
because the matter is not public.
While the rival bid was submitted by Sigma-Aldrich only, the
company had planned to sell Life Tech's gene sequencing business
to Roche, which was interested in buying that business and not
the entire company, the people said.
Roche was referred to as "strategic party B" in the merger
document Life Tech filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission on Tuesday, the sources added.
The filings show Roche has retained its interest in
expanding into next-generation genetic sequencing more than a
year after its $6.8 billion hostile offer for Illumina Inc
failed over price.
The partnership with Roche also explains how Sigma-Aldrich,
which has a market cap of just over $10 billion, was able to put
together a bid for a larger rival.
While both Thermo Fisher and Sigma-Aldrich made their final
offers at $76 per share - the ultimate deal price - Life Tech's
board determined Thermo Fisher's all-cash offer was superior,
the filings show.
Sigma-Aldrich had offered to pay 14 percent of the purchase
price in its own stock, according to the filings.
Representatives for Sigma-Aldrich, Life Tech and Roche did
not immediately respond to requests for comment.