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UPDATE 1-Arseus enters US with Gallipot buy, eyes more M&A

AMSTERDAM, May 10 (Reuters ) - Belgian medical equipment and services company Arseus NV said on Monday it would buy U.S.-based pharmaceutical supplies company Gallipot Inc. for about $12.5 million in cash, its first step outside of Europe. Arseus, which said it is targeting more acquisitions in Europe and the Americas, said the acquisition of Gallipot by its unit Fagron will add to its earnings per share in 2010 after its consolidation, retroactive to April 1. "I think it is a good starting point for more possibilities in the U.S.," Chief Executive Ger van Jeveren told reporters of the deal to buy the privately-owned Gallipot. He added the company was also looking especially at South American companies and expansion into Canada, alongside its European acquisition plans, and was already involved in tying up a few possible deals. Chief Financial Officer Jan Peeters said Arseus paid a little more than one times sales for Gallipot, which has about $12.5 million in annual revenues.

It had an earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) margin in line with Arseus unit Fagron. Arsues shares rose 8.4 percent to 8.90 euros at 0833 GMT on Monday, in line with a sharp surge in the wider Belgian market. Arseus -- whose products include dentists' chairs, surgical instruments and pharmaceutical ingredients -- said the market for pharmaceutical compounding in the U.S. has shown strong growth in recent years and that this is expected to continue. It estimated the market at $350 million to $400 million in sales annually. (Reporting by Aaron Gray-Block; Editing by Hans Peters) Keywords: ARSEUS/ (aaron.gray-block@thomsonreuters.com; +31 20 504 5001; Reuters Messaging: aaron.gray-block.reuters.com@reuters.net) COPYRIGHT Copyright Thomson Reuters 2010. All rights reserved.

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