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15 December 2000 - Cepheid Announces Distribution Agreement with Eurogentec for Europe


SUNNYVALE, CA December 15, 2000

Cepheid today announced that they have signed a multi-year agreement with Eurogentec to market the Cepheid Smart Cycler system in the life sciences research market in Europe. Eurogentec will provide sales, marketing and technical support for the Smart Cycler from its headquarters in Sart Tilman, Belgium, and will serve as the exclusive distributor for the Smart Cycler system in Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

The Smart Cycler, a highly versatile and efficient, rapid thermal cycler, incorporates homogeneous optical detection for DNA amplification and analysis that is tailored to the evolving needs of todays molecular biology laboratory. Through a sophisticated PC-based user interface, the Smart Cycler is the first system to provide the operator with the ability to define and simultaneously carry out as many as 16 separate cycling protocols with the systems independently programmable reaction sites.

We are pleased to join forces with Eurogentec for the launch of the Smart Cycler system in Europe, stated Tom Gutshall, Cepheids CEO and Chairman. Their emphasis on leading-edge, research tools with a high added value in life sciences aligns perfectly with Cepheids objectives for this market segment. Eurogentecs extensive line of nucleic acid reagents together with the Smart Cycler System will provide an integrated solution to genomic researchers needs.

Commercial launch of the Smart Cycler in Europe is expected in the first quarter of 2001. The Smart Cycler is currently sold in the United States by Fisher Scientific and in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan by Takara Shuzo.

Eurogentec, formed in 1985 as a spin-off of the University of Liege, orients its business along two major lines: the production and sale of life science research tools and research and development services for the biopharmaceutical industry. The company has subsidiaries in France, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK.

Cepheid is applying proprietary microfluidic and microelectronic technologies to the development of fast, versatile, miniaturized systems that can perform all the steps required to analyze complex biological samples including sample preparation, amplification and detection with a single platform. Cepheid is initially focused on the detection of DNA and RNA in such application areas as life science research, clinical diagnostics, industrial testing, and pharmacogenomics.

Statements in this release regarding Cepheids relationship with Eurogentec, including those that may relate to revenue growth, trends in financial or operational performance, litigation, new product plans and business prospects are forward-looking statements. Actual results might differ materially from these statements due to risks and uncertainties, including the impact of competitive products and pricing, market acceptance of new products, market conditions and enforcement of intellectual property rights. A more detailed description of these risks and other risks applicable to Cepheid appears in Cepheid's registration statement on form S-1, filed with the securities and exchange commission and available upon request from Cepheid. Cepheid disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements. Cepheid and Smart Cycler are registered trademarks of Cepheid.

CONTACT: Cathy Smith, CEO
(408) 541-4191 ext 230
www.cepheid.com


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