Purdue tried to buy Reckitt Benckiser’s addiction business - (Financial Times via NewsPoints Desk)

  • Purdue Pharma, which is facing multiple US lawsuits over its alleged role in fuelling the country's opioid epidemic, attempted to profit from the crisis by making a takeover approach for Reckitt Benckiser's addiction treatment business, reported the Financial Times.

  • According to two people familiar with the matter, Purdue made the previously unreported approach in early 2014 after Reckitt Benckiser initiated a strategic review of its pharmaceuticals unit.

  • Reckitt Benckiser's former pharma division makes opioid replacement therapies developed to wean addicts off heroin and prescription analgesics, including Purdue's OxyContin.

  • The sources noted that the UK-based consumer goods group rejected the approach from Purdue, and eventually spun off its pharmaceuticals division, now known as Indivior.

  • Last week, the US Department of Justice demanded at least $3 billion in fines from indivior, charging the company with using a fraudulent marketing scheme to boost prescriptions of its treatments. Indivior denies the claims.

  • Meanwhile, Purdue has said it may consider filing for bankruptcy, while analysts expect Indivior would not survive a $3-billion fine.

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