Novartis sheds oral solid generics in $900m Aurobindo deal

By Flora Southey contact

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/CreativaImages)
(Image: Getty/CreativaImages)

Related tags: Novartis, Sandoz, Generic drugs, Dermatology

In Novartis’ latest restructuring move for 2018, the pharma giant announced plans to sell US generic oral solids and dermatology businesses to Aurobindo Pharma US.

According to the agreement, Aurobindo will pay $900m (€779m), as well as $100m in potential earn-outs, to Novartis for selected portions of its US generics portfolio – made by Novartis subsidiary Sandoz.

Approximately 300 products, accounting for H1 2018 sales of around $600m – as well as additional development projects – will transfer to Aurobindo, a Novartis spokesperson told us.

In addition, “Aurobindo will acquire the manufacturing facilities in Wilson, North Carolina, and Hicksville and Melville, New York,” ​we were told. At least 750 Sandoz employees are expected to transfer to Aurobindo.

The divestment, which is expected to close before the end of next year, follows on from a number of strategic moves designed to “refocus” ​Novartis’ business in 2018. “Sharpening our portfolio focus in the US allows us to devote more time and resources toward our strategy of bringing complex generics, value-added medicines and biosimilars to patients in the US”, ​confirmed Sandoz CEO Richard Francis in a statement​.

In March 2018​, Novartis said it would sell its $13bn stake in a consumer healthcare joint venture to partner GlaxoSmithKline, and further invest in its core pharmaceutical businesses. Two months later​, Novartis agreed to sell a sterile manufacturing facility and development centre in Quebec, Canada, to contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) Avara Pharmaceutical Services.

More recently, in July 2018​, Novartis again announced plans to free-up resources for core focus areas by exiting the antibiotics R&D space.

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