Abbott to buy CFR Pharmaceuticals

Enhances its position in fast-growing Latin American market

Abbott is to buy CFR Pharmaceuticals of Chile for US$2.9bn, more than doubling its presence in the $73bn Latin American pharmaceuticals market.

The company will also assume CFR's net debt of approximately $430m.

Under the terms of the agreement, Abbott will buy Kalo Pharma Internacional, the holding company that indirectly owns approximately 73% of CFR, and conduct a cash tender for the remaining shares outstanding.

The deal is expected to close by the end of the third quarter of 2014.

The move immediately places Abbott among the top 10 pharmaceutical companies in Latin America, further broadening its geographic presence across the region.

'With its scale and leadership positions in the region, strong commercial and development organisations, well-respected leadership team and a trusted portfolio of recognised brands, CFR is one of the leading branded generic companies in Latin America,' said Miles White, Chairman and CEO at Abbott.'

This acquisition will significantly enhance and broaden Abbott's Latin American footprint, and is well aligned with our long-term strategy and commitment to fast-growing markets.'

Abbott expects the acquisition to add approximately $900m to its sales in the first full year (2015), with expected double-digit sales growth over the next several years.

Santiago-based CFR Pharmaceuticals sells a range of products for women's health, central nervous system, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases in 15 markets across Latin America.

The company employs approximately 7,000 people, and has R&D and manufacturing facilities in Chile, Colombia, Peru and Argentina.

The Latin American pharmaceutical market is expected to reach $124bn in sales by 2018, with estimated annual growth rates of two to three times that of developed markets over the coming years, according to IMS forecasts.

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