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Henry Schein boosts animal health business with German deal

Health care distributor Henry Schein's shares rose about

Health care distributor Henry Schein's shares rose about 20 percent in 2014. Photo Credit: Ed Betz

Henry Schein Inc., Long Island's largest public company by sales, has acquired a Germany-based distributor of animal health laboratory and diagnostic products, the Melville company announced Monday.

The acquisition, Scil Animal Health, is a unit of BioNet Holding GmbH, a holding company based in Martinsried, Germany, according to BioNet's website. Scil had sales of about $70 million for the 12 months ended Sept. 30.

Henry Schein made the announcement at the North American Veterinary Community conference in Orlando, Florida. Financial details were not disclosed, but Henry Schein said it expects the acquisition to slightly dilute its 2015 earnings per share -- meaning its earnings will be slightly decreased this year.

Henry Schein distributes dental, health care and animal health products and services to office-based practitioners.

The animal health business is a sizable one. Henry Schein Animal Health had 2013 sales of about $2.6 billion, accounting for about 27 percent of the company's total sales, according to Henry Schein financial data.

The company's dental unit recorded about 52 percent of sales, with the remainder coming from sales of medical and technology products.

Scil Animal Care, with more than 200 employees, sells and supports diagnostic and imaging products to veterinarians in the United States, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain, with a distribution presence in 25 additional countries.

"This will be a significant step forward in expanding our diagnostics product category and gaining market share for our animal health diagnostics partners, including Abaxis, Inc. and Heska Corp.," Henry Schein chief executive Stanley M. Bergman said in a statement.

In October, Henry Schein announced distribution agreements with Abaxis and Heska, two publicly traded veterinary product manufacturers.

"The partnership with Henry Schein Animal Health will represent an important step for the Scil Animal Care organization," said veterinarian Dr. Hartmut Jaissle, chief executive of Scil. He will continue to lead the business based in Viernheim, Germany.

The acquisition of Scil will add Canada and Italy to the list of countries served by Henry Schein Animal Health, which currently serves customers in 12 European countries, the United States, Australia and New Zealand.

The deal, Henry Schein's second acquisition of 2015, is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close in the second quarter of 2015.

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