NEW YORK (AP) - Inverness Medical Innovations Inc. said late Wednesday it increased its offer to buy San Diego-based medical test maker Biosite Inc., rivaling a bid by Beckman Coulter Inc.
The new offer increases Inverness' bid for Biosite by $2.50 per share to $92.50 per share.
Biosite, which had already called Inverness' offer superior, confirmed on Thursday it had received the new offer letter, along with commitment letters from financiers. Shares of Biosite closed at $94 Wednesday.
On May 2, Fullerton, Calif.-based Beckman Coulter increased its offer for Biosite by $5 per share to $90, or to about $1.67 billion.
The contest for Biosite began in March when Beckman Coulter offered to buy Biosite's outstanding stock for $85 per share, a 53 percent premium over the stock's closing price before the announcement, in a transaction valued at $1.55 billion. Waltham, Mass.-based Inverness, which already owns 4.9 percent of Biosite's outstanding shares, responded in April by making an unsolicited cash bid of $90 per share for Biosite.
Biosite makes tests to diagnose cardiovascular disease, infectious diseases, drug abuse, and diseases involving blood clots and the circulation of blood in the brain. In 2006, the company posted earnings per share of $2.20 and booked revenue of $308.6 million.
Separately, Inverness said it entered agreements to sell about $132.5 million in convertible senior subordinated notes due 2017 to institutional buyers in a private offering. The company expects to close the sale next week and take in proceeds of about $128.7 million.
The notes will pay semiannual interest at a rate of 3 percent a year, with a conversion price of about $52.30 per share. Shares of Inverness closed at $40.23 Wednesday.