Meda sells off Spain operation that makes Legalon API

Sweden's Meda last year laid out $3.1 billion to buy Italy's Rottapharm Madaus with plans to beef up its own consumer health and OTC business. It said at the time it could help pay for that deal in part by paring down some of its infrastructure, and the sale of an API business in Spain follows that line of action.

Meda announced Tuesday it will sell Euromed, a private label manufacturer of extracts and natural active substances, to private equity investor The Riverside Co. for €82 million ($86.9 million). The unit, which it got in the Rottapharm acquisition, generates about €40 million in sales a year, Meda said.

Euromed's primary product, according to Meda, is the API for Legalon, a supplement for liver health made from an ingredient extracted from milk thistle. Meda is now getting out of that business, instead striking a long-term supply contract with Euromed's new owner to supply it.

"The divestment of Euromed is in line with our stated strategy to focus on Meda's core business of selling and marketing Rx and Cx/OTC products in key markets," Meda CEO Jörg-Thomas Dierks, said in a statement. "Furthermore we secure a long-term supplier for the API of our key product, Legalon."

Meda has been both buying and selling in the last couple of years. It recently was reported the company is looking into selling its U.S. business, Meda Pharmaceuticals, a move that might raise about $1 billion that it could use to lower debt, while making other acquisitions.

Last year, Meda unloaded a Meda Pharmaceuticals location in Lakewood, NJ, to San Antonio, TX-based contract manufacturer DPT for an undisclosed amount as part of a move to "optimize manufacturing." The site has aseptic processing operations and manufactures small-volume parenterals, ophthalmic preparations, sterile ointments and other products. In addition to getting the two-building, 90,000-square-foot facilities, DPT brought on about 70 Meda employees so it could continue manufacturing MUSE, Meda's urethral suppository product, as part of a long-term supply agreement with Meda.

- here's the announcement