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Germany’s Merck buying Millipore for $7.2 B

German pharmaceutical company Merck KGaA will buy U.S. biotech equipment maker Millipore Corp. in a deal valued at $7.2 billion including debt, according to media reports Sunday.

Speculation about an acquisition of the life sciences company, which supplies tests and equipment to the biotechnology industry, has swirled since reports last week said lab instrument maker Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. offered $6 billion for Millipore.

[St. Louis Post Dispatch]