GENEVA, March 27 (Xinhua) -- The Swiss-based international pharmaceutical company Novartis announced Tuesday that it will divest from its stake in consumer health care joint unit JV, selling it to Britain's GlaxoSmithKline for 13 billion U.S. dollars.
In a statement from its Basel headquarters, Novartis said that stripping its 36.5 percent stake in its consumer healthcare joint venture will enable it to further focus on the development and growth of its core businesses including bolt-on acquisitions.
Vas Narasimhan, CEO of Novartis, said, "While our consumer healthcare joint venture with GSK is progressing well, the time is right for Novartis to divest a non-core asset at an attractive price."
The joint venture was formed in 2015 as part of Novartis' portfolio transformation.
This comprised a three-part inter-conditional transaction with GSK, including the combination of the Novartis Over-the-Counter (OTC) business with the GSK consumer healthcare business into the existing JV.
The consumer healthcare JV investment is accounted for in Novartis' financial reporting using the equity method of accounting, whereby the company's share of the net income is reported as income from associated companies.
Novartis said GSK has agreed to pay cash for Novartis' stake in the consumer healthcare joint venture.
The transaction is subject to GSK shareholder approval.
Novartis provides healthcare solutions and in 2017, the group achieved net sales of 49.1 billion U.S. dollars, while research and development amounted to some 9 billion U.S. dollars.
The company said its group companies employ approximately 122,000 full-time-equivalent associates and it sells its products in some 155 countries around the world.