Novartis to acquire Fougera Pharmaceuticals for $1.5 billion

Novartis announced Wednesday that it signed a definitive agreement to acquire specialty dermatology generic medicine company Fougera Pharmaceuticals in an all-cash deal valued at $1.5 billion. The acquisition of Fougera will make Novartis’ Sandoz unit the leading generic dermatology medicines company globally and in the US.

Fougera, which has more than 45 products in the dermatology generics sector and another 17 products under its branded PharmaDerm business, had net sales of $429 million in 2011. Together with Sandoz, sales are expected to increase to about $620 million, primarily in the US.

The transaction is expected to close in the second half of the year provided it receives regulatory approval. The Swiss drugmaker said the deal should be accretive to earnings immediately.

Commenting on the news, Sandoz global head Jeff George noted that "the addition of Fougera's leading portfolio further strengthens Sandoz's differentiated products strategy and… brings us valuable technical capabilities in the area of topical dermatological products, particularly in the development and manufacturing of semi-solid forms such as creams and ointments."

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