Sterigenics has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Nordion Inc.

Nordion is a leading provider of medical isotopes and sterilisation technologies, used by pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, medical-device manufacturers, hospitals, clinics and research laboratories.

Upon completion of the transaction, shareholders of Nordion will receive $11.75 per share in cash.

The purchase price represents a premium of approximately 12% to the closing price of $10.48 per share on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on March 27 2014.

The price also represents a premium of approximately 24% over the 90-day volume weighted average price of $9.47 per share on the NYSE.

Nordion operations will remain in Canada, with headquarters in Ottawa, and the company will continue to operate under the Nordion name.

Through this acquisition, Sterigenics will provide security of supply of Cobalt-60 for customers in Canada, North America and worldwide.

In addition, Sterigenics will work to leverage its expertise to secure and expand medical isotope supply.

Sterigenics chief executive officer Michael Mulhern said: "Through this acquisition, our primary focus is to ensure a stable, long-term source of Cobalt-60 that will maintain customer confidence in the future availability and growth of gamma sterilisation as one of many sterilisation options."

Nordion chief executive officer Steve West said: "Nordion has a proven relationship with Sterigenics, established over 30 years of doing business together.

"We look forward to exploring further opportunities with Sterigenics to strengthen our sterilisation technologies and medical isotopes businesses."

The transaction is subject to certain closing conditions, including receipt of all regulatory approvals, and is expected to close in the second half of 2014.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP, Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP served as legal advisors. Goldman, Sachs & Co served as financial advisor to Sterigenics.