Perrigo to acquire Omega in $4.5bn M&A deal

BY Fraser Tennant

A major new pharmaceutical M&A deal will see Perrigo acquire Belgian firm Omega Pharma for $4.5bn – a deal which will transform the US consumer healthcare company into a top five global OTC company.

The deal between Perrigo, a leading global provider of quality affordable healthcare products, and Omega Pharma, one of the largest OTC healthcare companies in Europe, is being funded through a combination of cash, debt and equity. It is expected to significantly expand Perrigo’s international presence and provide the Dublin-based manufacturer with a much larger slice of the European over-the-counter healthcare sector.

No stranger to M&A, Perrigo bought the biotechnology company Elan in July 2013 for $8.6bn.

"The combination of these two great companies accelerates Perrigo's international growth strategy, substantially diversifies our business streams and establishes a durable leadership position in the European OTC marketplace," said Perrigo chairman, president and chief executive, Joseph C. Papa.

The Perrigo boss is confident that the deal will: (i) accelerate Perrigo's strategy to expand internationally; (ii) combine Perrigo's supply chain and operational excellence with Omega's OTC branding and regulatory expertise; (iii) create multiple opportunities to cross-sell Perrigo products in diverse new channels; (iv) position Perrigo to capture additional share of the $30bn European OTC market; (v) add approximately 2500 employees, including a large sales team of approximately 1100 individuals; and (vi) provide leadership position in a durable, European OTC cash pay market.

Mr Papa continued "Our strong financial performance and operational structure have enabled the continued growth and globalisation of our business model with Ireland as our gateway for this expansion. Together, our combined company will have an even larger product portfolio, broader geographic reach, and enhanced scale.”

“This is an exciting time in the history of our company,” added Omega Pharma founder and chief executive Marc Coucke. “My continued ownership investment demonstrates my confidence in the potential for the combined company. Together, we will have a substantially broader product portfolio with established global platforms and commercial channels to better serve our customers and patients."

The Perrigo/Omega Pharma deal is expected to close in the first quarter of next year.

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