In yesterday's note, I mused about the Cerner purchase of Labotix (see: Cerner Enters Lab Automation Market with Purchase of Labotix but Why?). The post elicited the following comment:
I have never been a fan of Cerner for a host of reasons. Nevertheless, their acquisition of Labotix is dumb, at best. The lab industry is littered with similar disasters. Within a few years Labotix will quietly slide away as a "diversion" to Cerner's core business. The message is "stick to your knitting" and you won't get burned. Charging into a low margin hardware business will not save a software business. The wonks at Cerner will eventually figure that out.
Here's the last two sentences of my note:
Cerner may have purchased Labotix with its 22 associates and contractors as a blocking strategy to keep any smaller LIS-focused competitors, or even some of the IVDs, from acquiring it and getting an edge in that market. Time will tell.
I am not sure that the purchase of Labotix was dumb. If the purpose was to keep other companies from acquiring it, the move may have been very smart. I agree that the acquisition would seem to have little to do with Cerner's core competencies and business model, It certainly will act as a diversion if any attention is paid to the company. It won't be a diversion if the company is ignored and left to slowly atrophy.