Selah Genomics buys company back from British firm

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EKF writes off $62 million

Upstate-based biotech firm Selah Genomics has bought its company back from EKF Diagnostics Holdings PLC of the United Kingdom.

Selah Genomics cofounder Michael Bolick said Wednesday that EKF’s new chairman had been focused on developing point-of-care diagnostic businesses and “our type of testing and where we are going is not along the path that he wants to take EKF.”

“We certainly stepped in and said, ‘We believe in this, greatly value the business partnership we have with the Greenville Health System and we want to push through,’” said Bolick. “I think it’s a win-win for both companies.”

In 2014, EKF Diagnostics acquired Selah Genomics for approximately $40 million in shares and additional deferred consideration of $35 million. According to UK’s Alliance News, Selah reported a loss of 2.6 million GBP (British pounds) — equal to approximately $3.87 million — for the 11 months ending November.

EKF is writing off 41.4 million GBP (British pounds) or approximately $62 million value of Selah, according to Alliance News.

Bolick could not disclose the amount of the sale, but said it was of “nominal value.” If Selah Genomics profits, it will share 10 percent with EKF, he said.

In January, the company is poised to launch new business health-focused assays that will complement corporate wellness programs, said Bolick.

“These tests are helping business to work with their employees to improve their wellness instead of waiting until diseases like strokes or heart attacks occur,” he said. The tests can detect genetic clues to health conditions and how a weight loss program may be effective for certain people, he added.

This year, Selah Genomics launched its Precision Path molecular test for colon cancer for sale in the international market. The company recently hired its first sales staff to sell the new assays and Precision Path, he said.

“We feel blessed to have the opportunity to harvest value from the investments that have been made to this point,” said Bolick.

The company was established in 2006 to commercialize technology licensed from Clemson University. Selah Genomics developed its Precision Path technology with the Greenville Health System’s Institute for Translational Oncology Research (ITOR) where Selah Genomics bases its research lab. Selah will continue to have a lab at ITOR and in the NEXT Innovation Center, said Bolick.

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