Dr Reddy's acquires quit-tobacco patch Habitrol from Novartis

Shares of Dr Reddy's Laboratories rose considerably after it announced today that it has closed the acquisition of the Habitrol brand from Novartis Consumer Health.

Habitrol is an over-the-counter nicotine replacement therapy transdermal patch. The acquisition was completed following the US Federal Trade Commission issuing the consent order on 26 November, a press release from the company said.

Dr Reddy's had earlier entered into an asset purchase agreement with Novartis to acquire the title and rights of Habitrol and to market the product in the US.

With this closure, DRL has assumed responsibility for the product. Shipments of the product to the market will commence shortly, the release said.
Habitrol had US sales of more than $58 million, according to the earlier reports.

Novartis' decision to handover the brand came after its merger deal with GlaxoSmithKline.

Citing the fact that Novartis and GlaxoSmithKline are the only companies marketing the nicotine patch product in the US, the FTC maintained the merger of their consumer healthcare business would make it difficult for other companies to bring new products of similar nature into the market.