Pfizer Weighs “Strategic Alternatives” for Consumer Healthcare Business

Company considering sale or spin-off of multibillion-dollar OTC business

Pfizer has announced that it is reviewing strategic alternatives for its Consumer Healthcare business. A range of options will be considered, including a full or partial separation of the Consumer Healthcare business from Pfizer through a spin-off, sale, or other transaction, and Pfizer may ultimately decide to retain the business, according to a statement. The announcement is part of Pfizer’s continuing efforts to allocate resources and capital to “best serve patients and maximize value for its shareholders.”

Pfizer Consumer Healthcare is one of the largest over-the-counter (OTC) health care products businesses in the world with 2016 revenues of approximately $3.4 billion, operating in more than 90 countries globally. Consumer Healthcare markets two of the 10 top-selling consumer health care brands globally—Centrum and Advil. In addition, the business has 10 brands that each exceeded $100 million in 2016 sales, and several local brands that are top-ranked in their respective markets.

“Pfizer Consumer Healthcare is a leading player in the largest OTC categories, with iconic brands, robust retail partnerships, global reach, and strong fundamentals,” said Ian Read, Pfizer Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, in the press release. “Although there is a strong connection between Consumer Healthcare and elements of our core biopharmaceutical businesses, it is also distinct enough from our core business that there is potential for its value to be more fully realized outside the company.”

Pfizer Consumer Healthcare develops, manufactures, and markets leading nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and personal care products. Major categories and product lines include dietary supplements (Centrum, Caltrate, and Emergen-C); pain management (Advil and Thermacare); gastrointestinal (Nexium 24 Hour and Preparation H); respiratory (Robitussin and Advil Cold and Sinus); and personal care (ChapStick and Anbesol).

Pfizer has engaged Centerview Partners LLC, Guggenheim Securities LLC, and Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC as financial advisors for the strategic review process. Pfizer expects that any decision regarding strategic alternatives for Pfizer Consumer Healthcare would be made during 2018. The company does not plan to make any further statements about the strategic review process until a decision has been reached or upon the completion of the strategic review.

Source: Pfizer; October 10, 2017.