According to sources close to the matter, Deerfield, Ill.-based medical technology company Baxter is in talks to purchase Chicago-based Hill-Rom, which manufactures hospital beds and patient monitoring equipment.

The talks, which are at an early stage, follow a private $144-a-share bid from Baxter that Hill-Rom rebuffed, some of the people said. It is far from guaranteed that a deal will be reached, but should there be one, it would be fairly substantial. Hill-Rom has a market value well exceeding $8 billion.

Its shares jumped on news of the bid, rising 7.2% to close at $132.64. That the shares remain well below the bid indicates some skepticism about whether there will be any deal. Baxter’s market value is around $41 billion.

Read the full article on the Wall Street Journal.