Royal DSM to acquire Martek for $1,087 million

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  • DSM (NYSE Euronext: DSM KON) to offer US$31.50 for each share of Martek Biosciences Corporation (Nasdaq: MATK) in an all-cash transaction (through a tender offer)
  • Total consideration of US$1,087 million (about euro 829 million)
  • Offer price represents 35% premium to Martek's closing share price on December 20, 2010
  • Martek Board of Directors recommends the offer
  • Acquisition adds new growth platform for natural, healthy Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFAs) nutrition ingredients (Omega-3 DHA and Omega-6 ARA)  
  • PUFAs are clinically proven to have important human health benefits. Martek is a leader in this field with strong positions, especially in Infant Formula Nutrition applications
  • Acquisition positions DSM as a leader in PUFAs and in Infant Nutrition, greatly strengthens DSM's presence in the United States and expands DSM's complementary technology platform in the field of algal and other microbial fermentations
  • Martek's growth will be accelerated by DSM's global market reach, technology base and application skill capabilities, its insights in the food, beverage and global dietary supplements markets and its strength in industrial biotechnology and related applications
  • Acquisition is immediately EPS accretive

Royal DSM N.V., the global Life Sciences and Materials Sciences company, and Martek Biosciences Corporation today announce that they have entered into a definitive agreement  under which DSM will acquire all the outstanding shares of common stock of Martek for US$31.50 in cash per share for total consideration of US$1,087 million.  The transaction has been approved by DSM's Supervisory Board and is recommended by Martek's Board of Directors. Subject to customary conditions, the tender process is expected to close in February 2011, and the transaction is expected to close in the first or second quarter of 2011.

The agreed price represents a premium of 35% to Martek's closing share price of US$23.36 on December 20, 2010, and 39% to the volume weighted average closing price of Martek's common stock over the last 90 days.  

The Transaction

The acquisition is structured as an all-cash tender offer for all the outstanding shares of Martek common stock to be followed by a merger in which each remaining share of Martek common stock would be converted into the same cash per share price paid in the tender offer. The tender offer is expected to commence between 10 January 2011 and 25 January 2011. The Martek Board of Directors has recommended that Martek stockholders accept the offer and tender their shares into the offer when it is made. The acquisition is subject to the satisfaction of customary conditions, including the tender of a majority of the outstanding shares of Martek common stock on a fully-diluted basis and the expiration or earlier termination of the Hart-Scott-Rodino antitrust waiting period and other regulatory approvals. The tender process is expected to close in February 2011, and the transaction is expected to close in the first or second quarter of 2011.

The transaction is not subject to a financing condition, and DSM intends to finance the acquisition from existing cash.

Strategic rationale

The purchase by DSM of Martek, a U.S. based producer of high value products from microbial sources that promote health and wellness through nutrition, will be the first major acquisition by DSM after its successful transformation into a Life Sciences and Materials Sciences company. This transaction is fully in line with DSM's strategy for its Nutrition cluster "continued value growth" and adds a new growth platform for healthy and natural food ingredients for infant formula and other food and beverage applications, especially focused on Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFAs) such as microbial Omega-3 DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and Omega-6 ARA (arachidonic acid).  

There is significant, broad based scientific evidence about the link between health and nutrition. PUFAs have been clinically proven to have a positive impact on human health and Martek is a leader in this field. Martek therefore represents an attractive strategic acquisition for DSM. It will provide DSM with new opportunities in the infant nutrition segment as well as food and beverage and dietary supplements and create a strong platform for DSM to enter the fast growing Omega-3 and Omega-6 market through Martek's microbial DHA and ARA products.

DSM will be able to leverage DSM's global nutritional infrastructure (global market reach, application skills, R&D and manufacturing technology base) to channel and accelerate the growth of these products into other regions, applications and market segments beyond Martek's current strong US-based position in infant formula ingredients and growing position in food and beverage and dietary supplement applications. As a result of the scale and resources that DSM can bring to the already solid businesses of Martek, DSM instantly becomes a leading player in the field of microbial PUFAs and through this attractive growth segment expects to drive compelling financial performance for its shareholders. The acquisition is immediately EPS accretive for DSM by 15 to 20 euro cents per ordinary share on a full year basis.

The two companies already have a longstanding relationship as DSM supplies Martek with the key base material for its ARA product. DSM has complementary intellectual property to the broad range of patents and intellectual property Martek owns, which will further extend the competitiveness of the combined company's proprietary products.

DSM will also benefit from Martek's recent acquisition of Amerifit, an attractive consumer business for branded dietary supplements with very specific health benefits, which it will be able to use as an additional marketing channel for both Martek as well as DSM ingredients.  

Furthermore, Martek's algal and other microbial-based biotechnology platform and its robust algal technology pipeline which complements DSM's own biotechnology portfolio, is expected to deliver new nutritional and non-nutritional (industrial) growth opportunities.

The acquisition is expected to realize material revenue synergies through expanded distribution, marketing and product development as well as other operational efficiencies, and will accelerate DSM's revenue growth.

Martek is headquartered in Columbia Maryland USA and had annual net sales of US$ 450 million for its fiscal year which ended October 31, 2010. Martek has five principal locations and some 600 employees.

Feike Sijbesma, CEO/ Chairman of the DSM Managing Board, said:

"Martek is a great company and a leader in the innovation, development, production and sale of high-value products from microbial sources that promote health and wellness through nutrition. DSM has enormous respect for Martek's products, organization and people. We look forward to working with their highly skilled team.  

"This acquisition is an attractive and logical next step for DSM. Martek's leading position in healthy, natural ingredients and algal technology will add a new growth platform to our Nutrition business. DSM is a unique partner for Martek and, with our strong track record of growing businesses in competitive environments, we believe we can help to lift Martek to the next level."

Martek's Chairman, Robert J. Flanagan, said:

"We are proud of the achievements of our company and are pleased to see the company's value recognized by DSM. Following thorough analysis by our board of directors, we have determined that this transaction offers the best value for our stockholders."

Martek's CEO, Steve Dubin, said:

"We are pleased to announce this transaction, and we believe that it is in the best interest of Martek and our stockholders. After careful analysis, our board of directors unanimously approved this transaction with DSM, which has a strong reputation and global operations. We are pleased that this transaction appropriately recognizes the value of Martek's nutritional ingredients, technology platform, market position and skilled workforce, while providing significant value to our stockholders. We have worked collaboratively with DSM for many years, and we are confident that they share our vision for Martek's future."


Martek Biosciences Corporation


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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