The FTC takes a closer look at Boston’s BTG bid


The acquisition of BTG by Boston Scientific will be at best delayed after the US Federal Trade Commission submitted a second request for further information on the deal. Unsurprisingly, the US antitrust watchdog is focusing on the two companies’ embolisation beads businesses – minute spheres made of glass or plastic infused into a cancer patient’s bloodstream to choke off the blood supply to tumours. BTG’s range of bead technologies encompasses the chemotherapy-eluting DC Bead range and the radioembolisation tech TheraSphere, and was the main reason Boston sought to buy the group. Boston itself has embolisation beads, Embozene, Oncozene and Contour. The 30-day waiting period for the transaction, imposed under US law to give the FTC time to assess a proposed acquisition, will now be extended until 30 days after “substantial compliance” with the FTC’s request for more documentation. The companies can voluntarily extend this further, and there is a small chance that if the FTC is satisfied it could be terminated earlier. The groups say they are still aiming to close the deal mid-year.  

BTG's beads business
    WW annual sales ($m)
Segment Device classification 2018e 2020e 2022e 2024e CAGR
Therasphere Radionuclide microspheres 176 226 273 321 +10%
Oncology beads Embolisation devices 68 65 70 75 +2%
  Total medtech revenues 461 567 683 824 +10%
  Total company revenues 1,099 1,084 1,206 1,341 +3%
Source: EvaluateMedTech.

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