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PacBio Acquires San Diego Startup Omniome

Omniome Headquarters in San Diego

Omniome Headquarters in San Diego

Pacific Biosciences of California, Inc. (Nasdaq: PACB) will purchase San Diego-based Omniome in a deal worth up to $800 million. Pacific Biosciences will acquire the start-up for an upfront cost of $600 million, half of which is cash and the rest in 9.4 million shares of PacBio common stock. An additional $200 million in cash and stock payable relies on the achievement of certain milestones for Omniome.

Founded in 2013, Omniome is developing a highly differentiated, proprietary short-read sequencing platform capable of delivering high accuracy.  

“The team at Omniome has spent several years developing a new and differentiated sequencing chemistry, Sequencing by Binding (SBB),” said Richard Shen, president at Omniome. “We developed this chemistry because clinical applications require a level of accuracy that is difficult to achieve with current sequencing technologies. SBB has fundamental advantages over other technologies and the potential to deliver higher sensitivity at a lower cost to unlock new markets.”

For PacBio, a leading provider of high-quality, long-read sequencing platforms, this acquisition will uniquely position it as the only company with both highly accurate long-read and short-read DNA sequencing platforms.

“The acquisition of Omniome is completely aligned with PacBio’s mission of enabling the promise of genomics to better human health. Adding Omniome’s short-read sequencing technology to our long-read portfolio will not only enable us to expand our total market opportunity, but we believe will also further accelerate the adoption of SMRT Sequencing as we expect to reach more customers with a deeper product offering,” said Christian Henry, President and CEO of PacBio. “We chose Omniome because of its novel approach which we believe could result in the most accurate short read sequencing platform to penetrate large, fast growing clinical application areas in oncology, transcriptomics, metagenomics and non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT).”