Merger & acquisition market healthy across healthcare in Q1
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Merger and acquisition (M&A) activity in the healthcare industry gained during the first quarter of 2012 over the prior and year-ago quarters, although the technology segment saw mixed results.

According to business-intel publisher Irving Levin Associates, the medical device industry saw 43 deals worth a total $3.2 billion, a 26 percent jump from the prior quarter (34 deals) but a 19 percent falloff from a year ago (53 deals).

Meanwhile e-health saw 27 deals worth $702 million to start the year, a bump of 13 percent from the prior quarter (24 deals) and a 125 percent leap from a year ago (12 deals).

While finishing second to medical devices in deal volume, biotechnology witnessed the biggest exchange of tech-segment dollars, with 29 deals worth $10.5 billion. Pharmaceuticals followed with 22 deals, good for $6 billion.

In the service segment, long-term care led the way with 39 deals worth $1.7 billion. Hospitals saw 23 deals, with $130 million changing hands. 

“Quarter over quarter, the volume of health care M&A deals keeps increasing as both strategic and financial buyers invest more of their capital in the various sectors of health care,” said Sanford Steever, editor of Levin’s Health Care M&A Report.

The Levin firm is based in Norwalk, Conn.