Amazon explored buying at-home medical test company

Morgan Haefner - Print  | 

Amazon was in talks earlier this year to buy diagnostics startup Confer Health, which develops hardware for at-home medical tests, according to CNBC.

Here are five things to know:

1. Two people familiar with Amazon's plans said that while the company's secretive special projects group explored a transaction with Confer, the discussions didn't lead to a deal.

2. One person said the Confer deal fell apart around the time Amazon entered into a definitive merger agreement to acquire online pharmacy PillPack for about $1 billion in June, according to CNBC.

3. Confer's at-home diagnostics, which include fertility and strep throat tests, are designed to provide consumers clinical-grade results without a trip to a physician.

4. The Confer deal would have been part of Amazon's medical diagnostics projects the company began actively exploring during the summer, according to CNBC. Led by Babak Parviz, PhD, Amazon's vice president of special projects, Amazon was looking into fertility, geriatric and other at-home tests.

5. Amazon appointed bioengineer Kristen Helton, PhD, who also co-founded a health monitoring startup, to lead the diagnostics project, the sources said. The project may be referred to internally as "Picard," which documents obtained by CNBC this summer found was anticipating $250 million in sales by 2020.

For the full CNBC report, click here.

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