Novartis divests its influenza vaccines business to CSL Limited, an Australian company, for an agreed price of 219 million euros, completing the last deal with GSK a few months ago. This is a strategic move of Novartis; they plan to focus on the pharmaceutical business, ophthalmology (Alcon) and generics (Sandoz).
Last year, influenza vaccine business reached a turnover of 1 billion euro. CSL was chosen because of their 40 years of experience in this business and will lead CSL to become the world’s second largest in the sector, with a market estimated to 3 billion euros. This transaction requires regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the second half of 2015.
Moreover, in April, Novartis signed a definitive agreement with GSK to exchange certain assets, building global leadership in key segments and focusing on its portfolio. Under this agreement, Novartis wanted to strengthen the company’s innovative pharmaceuticals business by acquiring GSK oncology products, and would divest Novartis Vaccines (excluding influenza) to GSK. Both companies also jointed forces to create a joint venture, combining their consumer divisions to create a world-leading consumer healthcare business.
In addition, Novartis had a definitive agreement with Eli Lilly and Company (Lilly) to divest its Animal Health Division, further focusing its portfolio on the leading businesses of innovative pharmaceuticals, eye care and generics. Investment in Biotech start-ups is a priority for Novartis as shows Novartis Venture Funds, managing $550M and investment heavily both in Europe and in the US.
Novartis is doing a strategic move but financial results remains largely positive. Margin increased as well as profits with a 23% net increase up to €7B over the first nine months of the year.