November 15, 2013—Oxford Instruments plc (Abingdon, England), provider of instruments and systems for a wide range of applications, announced November 12th an offer to purchase Andor Technology plc (Belfast, Northern Ireland), provider of imaging and spectroscopy instrumentation. Andor’s Board is considering a bid of 500 pence per share in cash from Oxford, a premium of 69 percent to Andor’s closing share price of 296 pence as of 8 July 2013, the day before Oxford first approached Andor. The offer, valued at approximately 159 million pounds (US $254 million), has sent Andor’s stock price soaring.
Oxford’s proposal makes sense in that Andor’s spectroscopy and imaging products are well aligned with Oxford’s nanotechnology tools division. Andor’s products would bring Oxford more squarely into the optical instrumentation space. Both companies have a strong academic customer base, and the combination would strengthen their existing distribution networks.
The deal is subject to final due diligence and unanimous approval of Andor’s Board. Oxford announced its intentions simultaneously with its half-year financial results, independently of Andor, a move that Andor’s Board stated as “premature and unhelpful in light of ongoing discussions.”