Ikaria to divest commercial business to Madison Dearborn for $1.6 billion

Ikaria announced that it reached an agreement to sell its commercial business to Madison Dearborn Partners for approximately $1.6 billion. Ikaria "is very well positioned for continued strong growth by virtue of its critical therapy, longstanding relationships with hospital administration and exceptional management team," commented Madison Dearborn managing director Tim Sullivan.

As part of the transaction, Ikaria shareholders will own a 45-percent stake in the new parent company. In addition, existing shareholders will own an independent R&D unit, which will be spun out of Ikaria. According to the company, the research division has approximately $80 million in cash to fund programmes including inhaled nitric oxide via pulsed delivery for pulmonary arterial hypertension, as well as pulmonary hypertension secondary to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Madison Dearborn will gain ownership of INOmax (nitric oxide), which is approved by the FDA for treating hypoxic respiratory failure associated with pulmonary hypertension in term and near-term infants. Ikaria lost US exclusivity for the product in this indication last July.

The agreement, which is expected to be finalised in the first quarter of 2014, follows reports in October that Ikaria was contemplating a sale valued at more than $2 billion.

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