Economy

Pfizer ponders spinning off its Consumer Healthcare division

Pfizer's consumer brands include Advil, Chapstick and Preparation H.

The pharmaceutical giant is weighing options for its consumer healthcare business.

Pfizer Inc. said Tuesday that it could explore a sale or spinoff of its business that produces Advil, Centrum and Emergen-C.

The consumer health care unit had revenue of about $3.4bn (£xx) a year ago, while the company as a whole recorded $52.8bn.

Mr Read said the unit's operations were "distinct enough from our core business that there is potential for its value to be more fully realised outside the company".

He said all divisions of the company were subject to periodic review and a decision could depend on whether the USA moved forward with tax reform.

Proceeds from a sale, which analysts said could top $10 billion, would give Pfizer more firepower to deal for prescription-drug makers.

Centerview Partners, Guggenheim Securities and Morgan Stanley have been brought in as advisors for the strategic review process. The company booked a $3.07bn profit in the in the second quarter on $12.9bn in revenue.

The cash flow and steadily growing sales bolstered Pfizer's earnings during the past few years, while the company was coping with generic competition for some of its top-selling products like the cholesterol drug Lipitor and pain medicine Lyrica.

Pfizer shares edged up 32c to $36.46 in pre-market trading, after the drugmaker announced its review. Year-to-date, PFE has gained 14.60%, versus a 15.23% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.



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