Sanofi's planned consumer health spinoff picks up interest from multiple firms: Bloomberg

As Sanofi continues to plot its planned separation from its consumer healthcare division, the business has reportedly attracted interest from multiple private equity firms.

Bloomberg lists Advent International and Blackstone as some of the interested parties, citing people familiar with the matter. Bain Capital, CVC Capital Partners, EQT AB and KKR & Co. are also eyeing the consumer health unit, which could be valued at “about $20 billion in any deal,” according to the publication's sources.

While Sanofi said it “does not comment on market rumors,” a spokesperson pointed to the October update on the company’s “play to win” strategy. At that time, the company divulged its intention to separate from the consumer health business.

The split will look to create “two entities, each better equipped to pursue its own business strategy, resourcing and capital allocation and enabling each to focus on long-term growth in its respective markets,” the company said at the time.

While the company was looking at potential separation options, it noted that the “most likely” path would be through a transaction in the capital markets and creating a new listed entity headquartered in Sanofi’s home country of France.

Sanofi’s consumer healthcare unit pulled down €5.18 billion ($5.6 billion) during 2023. The spinoff could take flight during this year’s fourth quarter “at the earliest,” according to the update.  

According to Bloomberg, company advisors have communicated that it’s open to a sale if such a deal could achieve its desired valuation, the people familiar with the matter told the news outlet, adding that Sanofi may keep a stake in the business in any deal.

In any case, deliberations are reportedly still in the early stages.

A Sanofi consumer health spinoff would follow in the footsteps of similar moves by several other large drugmakers, including Johnson & Johnson and GSK.

Johnson & Johnson formally announced its standalone healthcare company in 2021, later branding the new business as Kenvue.  

GSK spinoff Haleon, meanwhile, debuted in 2022. The drugmaker recently sold 300 million of its Haleon shares, collecting about 978 million pounds ($1.24 billion).