WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — The Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
announced Feb. 23 the approval of a final order settling charges that Abbott
Laboratories’ $25 billion acquisition of St. Jude Medical Inc. would be
anti-competitive. The approval comes following a public comment period.
The FTC had alleged the acquisition would have harmed
U.S. competition for vascular closure devices. These devices help close holes
in arteries from catheter insertion. The devices are also used for “steerable”
sheaths, which help guide catheters for treating heart arrhythmias.
As per the finalized consent agreement, St. Jude must divest all rights and assets related to its vascular closure device business to
Terumo Corporation, a medical device company based in Tokyo. Abbott,
meanwhile, will need to divest to Terumo its steerable sheath business. The
companies must help Terumo establish manufacturing capabilities for these
products. With this agreement in place, Abbott can move forward with its
acquisition of St. Jude.
The FTC voted 2-0 to approve the final order. Jordan Andrew
from the Bureau of Competition is the staff contact for the case.