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Data Sciences International Selling for $70 Million
Kristen Knox, CEO of Data Sciences International

Data Sciences International Selling for $70 Million

Publicly-traded Harvard Bioscience Inc. is the buyer.

Harvard Bioscience Inc., a publicly-traded company based in Holliston, Massachusetts, has struck a deal to acquire New Brighton-based Data Sciences International for approximately $70 million. The deal, announced Monday afternoon, is expected to close later this month or in early February.
 
Founded in 1984, the privately-held DSI had revenue of about $44 million for 2017. DSI is a biomedical research company with an expertise in medical monitoring technology for laboratory animals. Harvard Bioscience makes scientific instruments for life science research.
 
DSI has 180 employees, including 150 at its corporate office. DSI’s operations will remain in Minnesota and DSI’s president and CEO Kristen Knox, who has led the company since July 2016, will remain with the company.
 
In conjunction with the announced deal for DSI, Harvard Bioscience simultaneously sold off its Denville Scientific Inc. subsidiary for approximately $20 million. Once the deal closes, Harvard Bioscience will have 560 employees. (That count includes DSI employees, but not Denville employees.)
 
Minnesota and Massachusetts share a connection as two of the leading states in the U.S. for medical device companies. The Battelle/BIO State Bioscience Jobs, Investments and Innovation 2014 report ranked the Twin Cities as the second-best region for jobs in the medical device industry, while the Boston area ranked third. (Battelle is a Columbus, Ohio-based company that serves laboratories and technology centers with research, management and product manufacturing and design services. BIO is the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, a Washington D.C.-based industry trade association.)
 
Harvard Bioscience’s announcement of the deal noted: “DSI has a strong presence in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries, as well as with contract research organizations. As of December 31, 2017, there is almost no overlap in the companies' top customers.”
 
Harvard Bioscience is not a large company. They reported revenue of $104.5 million for 2016, a 3.8 percent decline from the previous year. The company had a net loss of $4.3 million for 2016, compared to a net loss of $19 million in 2015.
 
Harvard Bioscience’s history stretches back more than a century. Dr. William Porter started Harvard Apparatus in 1901 in the basement of the Harvard Medical School.
 
Harvard Bioscience’s stock closed at $3.90 on Monday, but was up 10 percent on Tuesday morning it the wake of DSI deal announcement. The stock was trading midday at $4.30, giving the company a market capitalization of approximately $150 million.