This article states that Aldevron is being purchased for $9.6 Billion! Yes, it’s BILLION, with a B.

There’s a somewhat funny story about one of the co-founders, John Ballantyne, that I’d like to share.

Back in the dark ages, about the time he was starting Aldevron, we lived in the same apartment building in north Fargo. One night there was a loud roaring sound, a crash, the building shook, and all the lights went out. My first thought was that the Air National Guard had just lost a fighter (at the time the NDANG was still flying F-16s), as we lived not very far from the airport. I looked out my window, but everyone else on the street still had power.

About that time John hollered out of the stairwell in his very distinctive Kiwi accent, “Guys, you gotta come see this!” So me and the guy who lived across the hall from him came out and walked into his apartment. There we found the front end of a mini-van parked over the top of his recliner. He had been watching TV and had just gotten up out of the chair to grab a beer out of the fridge when the crash happened. The driver’s side front tire was right where his head normally is when he’s sitting in the chair.

One of our other neighbors, who lived across the hall from me, came how drunk as a skunk and passed out while driving. She apparently passed out just as she was pulling into her spot in front of the garages. I normally parked my car inside my garage, but for some unknown reason that day I had parked in front of my garage. She missed hitting my car on one side, and missed hitting the fence on the other side, went through her closed garage door and then through the side of her garage into mine. Then she continued on through out the back side of my garage and into the apartment building, just missing hitting the power box on the outside of the building. Six inches to the left and she probably would have electrocuted herself instead of just disconnecting the power from the building.

Well, now it appears he will have enough funds to do whatever he wants. I hope he finds something to do that he enjoys. Best wishes to him.