Aspen to sell Japanese operations to Sandoz for up to €400m

11th November 2019 By: Tasneem Bulbulia - Creamer Media Reporter

JSE-listed Aspen’s subsidiary, Aspen Global Incorporated (AGI), which is incorporated in Mauritius, has concluded an agreement to sell its Japanese operations and any related intellectual property to multinational pharmaceutical company Sandoz, a Novartis division, for up to €400-million in cash.

Additionally, AGI has entered into a five-year manufacturing and supply agreement with Sandoz – with an additional two-year extension option at the election of Sandoz – for the supply of active pharmaceutical ingredients, semi-finished and finished products related to the portfolio of divested brands.

The proceeds from the transaction will be used to reduce debt.

The transaction is conditional upon the fulfilment of the customary conditions precedent and the transaction is expected to be finalised in the first half of the 2020 calendar year.

The sale is consistent with Aspen’s strategy to focus on its core pharmaceuticals business in markets where it has sufficient scale and where there is alignment between its business model and the relevant market dynamics.

While Aspen’s current portfolio and operational platform in Japan do not provide sufficient scale and leverage in this market, it is believed that this business’ current strong management, dedicated staff, specialty portfolio and commercial platform will present a good opportunity once combined with Sandoz’s Japanese portfolio and product pipeline.