Today in Globe Business
French drug maker Sanofi-Aventis SA yesterday went public with an offer to buy Genzyme Corp. for $18.5 billion in cash, a move intended to step up pressure on the Cambridge company after what Sanofi executives said was a rebuff from Genzyme’s board.
Sanofi’s nonbinding bid to take over Genzyme, the largest biotechnology company in Massachusetts, amounts to an offer of $69 a share, far less than the $80 some Genzyme investors hoped the company would fetch.
The bid, though, represents a 38 percent premium over Genzyme’s share price of $49.86 on July 1, before news that Sanofi planned to make a major acquisition drove up the prices of Genzyme and other biotechs. Genzyme’s share price closed Friday at $67.62.
WORCESTER — The blinded, disoriented firefighters who crawled up the stairs of a century-old brick building here recently had to find a missing colleague, and find him fast.
Their only hope was a battery-powered homing beacon worn by the lost firefighter.
Fortunately, the gadget worked, leading the rescuers directly to him.
Immediately, all three of them sat up, stripped off their oxygen masks — and their blindfolds — and took deep breaths of fresh, smoke-free air.
Then they ran the exercise all over again.
Around the world, half a billion people live with uncorrected vision problems, according to World Health Organization estimates, in part because eye specialists are rare in the developing world.
But a team at the MIT Media Lab believes it can help restore sharp eyesight to many of these people, with a vision test that uses cellphones, an inexpensive clip-on eyepiece, and free software.
Ramesh Raskar says his team has developed a prototype eye test that rivals what vastly more expensive machines do in eye doctors’ offices. The implications could be significant for the developing world, where cellphones are far more common than opportunities for eye care.
Highlights from Scott Kirsner’s Innovation Economy blog.
When I needed wheels for a quick trip to Plymouth, I didn’t reserve at Avis or grab a Zipcar from one of its designated spots. Instead, I popped the locks on a neighbor’s car when he wasn’t around and took off. It was cheaper than the other options.
While it sounds illicit, borrowing a neighbor’s car when it isn’t being used is the concept behind RelayRides, a Cambridge start-up I wrote about earlier this year.