Sandoz, the generic drug subsidiary of Novartis, plans to buy Fougera Pharmaceuticals in a cash deal of about $1.53 billion.

Sandoz, Fougera, Novartis, generic drug, dermatology generics, specialty pharmaceutical, dermatological medicines, generic dermatology medication, Jeff George, Don DeGolyer, Sandoz US

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Sandoz to acquire Fougera for $1.5 billion

May 2nd, 2012

BASEL, Switzerland – Sandoz, the generic drug subsidiary of Novartis, plans to buy Fougera Pharmaceuticals in a cash deal of about $1.53 billion.

Novartis said late Wednesday that, pending regulatory approvals, it expects to finalize the transaction in the second half of this year. Fougera's sellers encompass a consortium of private equity funds, led by Nordic Capital, DLJ Merchant Banking (a Credit Suisse affiliate) and Avista Capital Partners.

Melville, N.Y.-based Fougera is a specialty dermatology business with 2011 net sales of $429 million. Its two main businesses are Fougera, a top player in the dermatology generics sector, with 45 products and more than 200 SKUs, and PharmaDerm, a branded specialty pharmaceutical business with 17 brands and over 40 SKUs.

Sandoz executives noted that Fougera has strong dermatology development and manufacturing expertise, with many launches planned for this year and beyond.

"The addition of Fougera's leading portfolio further strengthens Sandoz's differentiated products strategy and improves our ability to help patients and customers around the world by providing easier access to high quality, affordable dermatological medicines. Fougera 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," Jeff George, global head of Sandoz.

Don DeGolyer, president of Sandoz US, commented, "Fougera and Sandoz serve many of the same customers in the U.S., creating significant sales and cost synergies with Sandoz's sizable U.S. generics business. We welcome the team from Fougera Pharmaceuticals into Sandoz and Novartis."

Once the deal is completed, Sandoz will become the No. 1 generic dermatology medication company globally and in the United States, according to Novartis. The company said U.S. dermatology generics sector is a particularly attractive industry segment, with 2011 sales of $2.1 billion and double-digit growth in recent years.