Sanofi-aventis completes acquisition of Chattem

Sanofi-aventis announced Thursday that it completed its $1.9-billion acquisition of Chattem. CEO Chris Viehbacher stated that "Chattem's existing sales, marketing and distribution teams and infrastructure provide a tremendous platform for future conversion of prescription medicines to over-the-counter products in the US."

The drugmaker intends to begin by converting Allegra (fexofenadine), explaining that the OTC product "is expected to be an important growth driver for sanofi-aventis." In addition, the company noted that the purchase of Chattem should be accretive to earnings as early as the first year.

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