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Invitrogen, Applied Biosystems Ink Merger

Biotech company Invitrogen (IVGN) has inked a deal to buy Applera Corp.'s scientific-instrument company Applied Biosystems (ABI) in a $6.7 billion cash and stock deal.

Under the deal announced Thursday morning, Applera-Applied Biosystems shareholders will receive $38 for each share in a combination of 55% in Invitrogen common stock and 45% cash. Applera-Applied Biosystems shareholders will have the option to request all cash or all stock.

The $38 per-share value represents a premium of 17% to Applied Biosystems's closing price Wednesday.

The merger of Carlsbad, Calif.-based Invitrogen and Foster City, Calif.-based Applied Biosystems is expected to close in the fall. The combined company will be called Applied Biosystems and will be headquartered in Carlsbad.

Invitrogen chairman and CEO Gregory Lucier will maintain those titles with the combined company, and Applied Biosystems' Mark Stevenson will maintain his titles of president and chief operating officer after the deal closes.

Invitrogen expects the acquisition will be neutral to slightly accretive to its earnings per share the first year after close and "significantly accretive" in the second year.

"Invitrogen and Applied Biosystems will be well positioned to compete in several rapidly growing markets, such as next generation sequencing, cell biology, applied markets and emerging geographies," the companies said in a statement.

Shares of Applied Biosystems were up $2.32, or 7.2%, at $34.76 in early trading Thursday. Shares of Invitrogen, however, were sliding $4.85, or 11.2%, to $38.50.

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