Ownes & Minor (OMI) to Acquire ArcRoyal; No Terms Sep 22, 2014 05:41PM

Owens & Minor, Inc.(NYSE: OMI) announced that it signed a definitive agreement on September 19, 2014 to acquire ArcRoyal, a privately-held surgical kitting company based in Ireland. This transaction will expand Owens & Minor’s capabilities in the assembly of kits, packs and trays in the European healthcare market and is highly complementary to the previously announced agreement to acquire Medical Action Industries (NASDAQ: MDCI), a U.S.-based kitting company. Because ArcRoyal’s primary customers are healthcare manufacturers, the transaction will further expand Owens & Minor’s manufacturer service offering and will complement Owens & Minor’s existing manufacturer-facing business in Europe. In addition, the combination of Medical Action Industries and ArcRoyal is expected to enhance Owens & Minor’s global sourcing opportunities.

“The acquisition of ArcRoyal will greatly expand our ability to produce kits, packs and trays for the healthcare market, and will provide us with immediate reach into European markets,” said James L. Bierman, president & chief executive officer of Owens & Minor. “ArcRoyal is well-known in Europe and has an established manufacturer customer base. We believe this acquisition gives us new opportunities for growth in the second largest global healthcare market.”

ArcRoyal was originally established in 1992 and is now a market leader in delivering custom solutions for a range of global healthcare companies. Products and services include custom procedure trays and a diverse range of essential surgical products, which reach hundreds of hospitals across Europe through corporate partners, distributors and other agents. Strategically located 30 miles from Dublin, ArcRoyal ships products to more than 30 countries.

The transaction is subject to certain customary regulatory approvals and is expected to close in fourth quarter of 2014. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.


USA Technologies (USAT) Reports NFC-Based Payment Program for Commercial Laundry Market Sep 22, 2014 05:35PM

USA Technologies, Inc.(NASDAQ: USAT) today announced a mobile payments, offers and loyalty program with Softcard™ designed for the multi-billion dollar commercial laundry market. Under the program, consumers using Setomatic Systems’(Setomatic) new SpyderWash® Elite laundry machines enabled with NFC and SmartTap® mobile commerce technology will receive a 25 percent discount on purchases made with the Softcard app.

By the end of 2015, Setomatic Systems has indicated that more than 25,000 SpyderWash Elite laundry machines, supported by USA Technologies’ ePort Connect Service, will support NFC mobile payments. This program, in partnership with Softcard, is the first nationwide mobile payments, offers and loyalty program targeted for what is estimated by Setomatic to be the $8 billion unattended commercial laundry market.

Setomatic’s SpyderWash® technology is an advanced, wireless payment system that accommodates coin, credit, debit, loyalty cards and NFC-enabled mobile payments. USAT, through its ePort Connect® Service, is the exclusive provider of comprehensive cashless payment services for Setomatic’s SpyderWash system. The Softcard app enables mobile payments at NFC payment terminals using a secure architecture and support for card tokenization while also serving up offers and loyalty programs at locations such as the SpyderWash® Elite.

“Setomatic is uniquely positioned to bring our customers this exciting and market-leading service that offers our customers a powerful competitive advantage in their marketplace,” said Michael Schantz, president of Setomatic Systems. “In partnership with USA Technologies, Setomatic Systems is the first service provider to bring NFC-enabled mobile payments to the laundry market. We anticipate that cashless and mobile payments, combined with loyalty programs such as this exciting national promotion, will raise consumer awareness, increase our customers’ revenue, and meet the demand for convenient cashless options in the millions of washers and dryers that make up the commercial laundry industry.”

USA Technologies currently has one of the largest NFC-enabled mobile payments acceptance points in the U.S. market today with over 150,000 NFC-equipped merchant locations in the U.S. in locations like schools, universities, laundromats, car washes, malls, office complexes, and theme parks.

The Setomatic mobile payments, offers and loyalty program is an extension of USAT’s nationwide rollout of NFC-based mobile payments and loyalty with Softcard that began in 2013. That agreement formed the basis for one of the largest mobile payment rollouts in the U.S. to date, along with our ‘Fifth Purchase Free’ loyalty program. Today, the Fifth Purchase Free promotion is supported at more than 82,000 locations using USAT’s ePort Connect service nationwide and has awarded nearly 100,000 free vends to consumers.

“We are looking forward to rolling out yet another 'industry first' in the area of NFC, mobile-based cashless payments and consumer engagement services,” said Michael Lawlor, Sr. VP Sales and Business Development, USA Technologies. “With Softcard’s efforts to date in the marketplace and the momentum surrounding NFC-enabled mobile payments, we believe NFC and mobile payments are at an important inflection point. We believe that USAT and partners like Setomatic are well positioned to capitalize on this technology to drive business to their machines. The Softcard mobile payments, offers and loyalty program for our commercial laundry customers adds another layer of value and is a great example of how USAT is keeping its customers and partners at the forefront of technology.”

“We believe that the convenience of mobile payments in highly trafficked, everyday locations like this will serve as a catalyst for adoption and usage among consumers,” said Mark McKinney, director of business development, Softcard. “We’re pleased to work with Setomatic and USA Technologies to pioneer mobile payments in the laundromat market, which is one segment in a much larger commercial laundry market. The commercial laundry market, which also includes multi-housing, consists of what Setomatic estimates to be 6 million machines generating annual revenue of approximately $8 billion.”

The Setomatic mobile payments, offers and loyalty program through Softcard is anticipated to begin in October 2014 and last through calendar 2015. To learn more about the program, contact Setomatic sales at 516-752-8008.


Omnicom Group (OMC) CFO Steps Down; Replacement Named Sep 22, 2014 05:28PM

Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE: OMC) today announced that Randall Weisenburger has stepped down as the Company's Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer to return to private equity. Omnicom's Board of Directors has appointed Philip Angelastro, currently Omnicom's Senior Vice President Finance and Controller, as Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer.

"Randy has been a strong leader for Omnicom over the past sixteen years. He has made significant contributions to the team in building a world-class company during our time together. We appreciate his many efforts to help drive Omnicom's success and we wish him all the best," said John Wren, President and CEO, Omnicom. "At Omnicom, we place considerable emphasis on succession planning and Randy and I have long agreed that Phil would eventually take over as CFO. I have complete confidence that under Phil's leadership, Omnicom will continue to build on our long term track record of creating value for all our stakeholders."

"I'm proud to have been part of such an outstanding group of people and the consistent success we have shared over many years," said Mr. Weisenburger. "I believe the company is extremely well positioned both strategically and financially, to continue to lead the industry for years to come."

Phil Angelastro has served as Senior Vice President, Finance and Controller for Omnicom since 2002. In this role, he has overseen financial and accounting matters throughout the organization and played a key role in the company's ongoing efforts to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of its financial operations. His responsibilities have also included financial systems, income tax planning and cash flow management. He has also worked closely with the leadership of Omnicom's networks and agencies, and is deeply immersed in the company's strategy and operations.

Mr. Angelastro began his career at Coopers & Lybrand where he became a partner in 1996. In 1997, he joined the DAS Network of Omnicom as Vice President of Finance and then CFO for the Americas. In 1999, he was appointed Controller of Omnicom, where he began a program of process improvement that continues today.

"I have had the pleasure of working closely with John and Randy for a number of years," said Mr. Angelastro. "I appreciate Randy's guidance and support during this time. I am excited for this new opportunity and look forward to working with our team and our stakeholders to help Omnicom to continue to deliver on our outstanding track record of performance."


Enbridge (ENB) to Transfer Assets Worth $1.76B to Enbridge Income Fund Sep 22, 2014 05:14PM

Enbridge Inc. (NYSE: ENB) has entered into an agreement with Enbridge Income Fund to transfer a package of natural gas and diluent pipeline interests to the Fund for total consideration of $1.76 billion. The transfer is subject to receipt of customary regulatory approvals and is expected to close in November 2014.

Enbridge will receive on closing approximately $421 million in cash, $878 million in the form of a long term note payable by the Fund and bearing interest of 5.5 percent per annum, and $461 million in the form of preferred units of Enbridge Commercial Trust, a subsidiary of the Fund. The note is expected to be repaid by the Fund on an expedited basis through the issuance of lower cost public debt, as with the prior transfers completed in 2011 and 2012. The Fund will issue $421 million of trust units to Enbridge Income Fund Holdings (TSX: ENF) to fund the cash component of the consideration.

ENF has entered into a bought deal agreement with a group of underwriters for $336 million of subscription receipts exchangeable into ENF common shares on closing of the transaction. Enbridge has subscribed for $84 million of ENF common shares to maintain its interest in ENF at 19.9 percent. Enbridge's overall economic interest in the Fund will decrease slightly from 67.3 percent to 66.4 percent as a result of the transfer.

J. Richard Bird, Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Development commented, "This latest drop down transaction is consistent with our strategy of utilizing our sponsored vehicles as a significant source of low cost funding for our record growth capital program. The drop down will provide $1.2 billion of net funding to Enbridge, of which over $300 million is in the form of equity. At the same time we retain a significant indirect interest in these assets and will also benefit from the corresponding increase in our incentive distributions from the Fund. So the drop down puts us in a strong position on our overall equity funding plan and is also increasingly accretive over the term of our strategic plan compared with issuing Enbridge common equity. It is a larger transaction than our previous drop downs, reflecting the larger asset base and capitalization of the Fund and ENF, and in turn will contribute further to the Fund's scale and asset quality, positioning it as an even more effective funding alternative going forward."


T2 Biosystems (TTOO) Approved by FDA to Market T2Candida and T2Dx Sep 22, 2014 05:11PM

T2 Biosystems (Nasdaq: TTOO), a company developing innovative diagnostic products to improve patient health, today announced that it has received market authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its first two products, the T2Candida® Panel and the T2Dx® Instrument for the direct detection of Candida species in human whole blood specimens from patients with symptoms of, or medical conditions predisposing the patient to, invasive fungal infections. T2Candida and T2Dx, for the first time, provide sensitive detection of specific sepsis-causing pathogens directly from a whole blood specimen in approximately four hours. All other currently FDA-cleared detection systems require cultured blood samples for species-specific identification and take two to five days or more to provide results.

"T2Candida and T2Dx have the potential to quickly change the hospital care paradigm and improve outcomes by offering a new and effective screening option for patients who are at-risk or suspected of having sepsis," said Eleftherios Mylonakis, M.D., Ph.D., FIDSA, chief, Division of Infectious Diseases, Dean's Professor of Medical Science, Professor of Medicine, Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital, Providence, R.I. "Compared to current blood-culture based diagnostic methods, T2Candida and T2Dx give us an option that provides specific and dependable results in a matter of hours, not days, allowing us to direct the right therapy to our patients – potentially saving their lives."

In the pivotal trial, T2Candida and T2Dx demonstrated a sensitivity of 91.1 percent and a specificity of 99.4 percent. The mean time to a positive result for T2Candida was 4.4 hours versus 129 hours for blood culture and species identification, the current gold standard. The mean time for a negative result for T2Candida was 4.2 hours, compared to 120 hours for blood culture. Both T2Candida and T2Dx were reviewed under the FDA de novo classification process for devices with low-to-moderate risk that are first-of-a-kind.

Studies have shown that if Candida can be diagnosed and treated with targeted therapy beginning within 12 hours of the presentation of symptoms, the associated mortality rate can be reduced from approximately 40 percent to 11 percent. Additionally, a typical patient with a Candida infection averages 40 days in the hospital, including nine days in intensive care, resulting in an average cost per hospital stay of more than $130,000 per patient. In a study published in the American Journal ofRespiratory and Critical Care Medicine, providing targeted antifungal therapy within 24 hours of the presentation of symptoms decreased the length of hospital stay by approximately 10 days and decreased the average cost of care by approximately $30,000 per patient.

Due to the high mortality rate and cost of Candida infections, many hospitals initiate potentially inappropriate antifungal drugs while waiting for blood culture-based diagnostic results. A negative result from T2Candida may provide timely data allowing physicians to avoid or suspend unnecessary antifungal treatment. This could result in a further reduction of treatment costs, as well as potentially helping to reduce antimicrobial resistant organisms, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has called "one of our most serious health threats."

T2Candida and T2Dx are the first diagnostic products powered by T2MR®, an innovative and proprietary magnetic resonance-based diagnostic technology platform that offers a fast, sensitive and simple alternative to existing diagnostic methodologies.

To date, more than 100 peer-reviewed publications have featured T2MR in a variety of studies, including the direct detection and measurement of targets in various sample types, such as whole blood, plasma, serum, saliva, sputum and urine.

"The FDA's market authorization of T2Candida and T2Dx mark a significant milestone for our Company, but more importantly for the more than 800,000 U.S. physicians across the country in need of faster diagnostic results so they can make timely and informed treatment decisions for their patients," said John McDonough, president and CEO of T2 Biosystems. "We believe the diagnostic capabilities offered by these products can support both improved clinical outcomes, as well as strong health economic benefits, and we look forward to working closely with the medical community to bring this novel diagnostic test to hospitals, physicians and patients."


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