November 18, 2010
WORLD NEWS | NOVEMBER 17, 2010
AstraZeneca has reportedly hired JPMorgan to find buyers for its Astra Tech business,the sale of which could bring in $2 billion. The Anglo-Swedish drugmaker told PharmaTimes World News that “as a general rule, we don’t comment on market speculation”. However, rumours abound that Astra Tech is going to be divested as the firm focuses all its resources on on drugs. Astra Tech develops, manufactures and markets dental implants as well as “advanced medical devices in the field of urology and surgery”. Headquartered in Sweden, with subsidiaries in 16 markets, it has around 2,200 employees and sales last year reached 3.90 billion Swedish kroner, about 374 million euros. It has also been rumoured that AstraZeneca may be looking at divesting Aptium Oncology, which is headquartered in Los Angeles and designs, builds and manages hospital-based outpatient cancer centres across the USA. That business has been estimated to be worth in the region of $500 million.
Should the speculation prove correct,, it comes as little surprise, given that AstraZeneca has not embraced the diversified business models adopted by many of its peers. Analysts believe that the funds these divestments could raise would be used for share buybacks and bolt-on acquisitions.
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