Abbott to Acquire Solvay Pharmaceuticals for $6.6 Billion

October 1, 2009
Patricia Van Arnum

Patricia Van Arnum was executive editor of Pharmaceutical Technology.

ePT--the Electronic Newsletter of Pharmaceutical Technology

Abbott Laboratories (Abbott Park, IL) agreed to acquire the pharmaceutical business of the Solvay Group (Brussels, Belgium) for EUR 4.5 billion ($6.6 billion) in cash, according to an Abbott press release.

Abbott Laboratories (Abbott Park, IL) agreed to acquire the pharmaceutical business of the Solvay Group (Brussels, Belgium) for EUR 4.5 billion ($6.6 billion) in cash, according to an Abbott press release. The transaction also includes payments of up to EUR 300 million ($437 million) if certain sales milestones are met between 2011 and 2013. Abbott will also assume certain liabilities, mainly pensions, valued at EUR 400 million ($583 million), according to a Solvay press release.

"The acquisition of Solvay Pharmaceuticals further diversifies our pharmaceutical portfolio, expands our presence in key high-growth emerging markets, enhances our investment in R&D and accelerates our long-term earnings-per-share growth outlook," said Miles D. White, chairman and chief executive officer of Abbott, in the company’s release.

Solvay Pharmaceuticals posted 2008 sales of EUR 2.7 billion ($3.9 billion), according to the Solvay press release. It employs 9000 people worldwide. Its key areas of therapeutic focus are neuroscience, cardiometabolic, influenza vaccines, gastroenterology, and men's and women's health. The acquisition also includes full global rights to the fenofibrate franchise. Currently Abbott has US rights to fenofibrate and pays royalties to Solvay. Solvay also has a small molecular diagnostics unit that will become part of Abbott's diagnostics organization upon the close of the transaction. This transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2010.