Aspen to buy GSK's international OTC brands

Aspen Pharmacare, Africa's biggest generic drugs maker, today agreed to buy a clutch of international over-the-counter healthcare brands of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) for £164 million ($263 million).

The sale comes less than four months after the London-based company sold some of its North American non-core over-the-counter (OTC) drugs to Prestige Brands Holdings, for £426 million ($661 million) in cash. (See: GSK to sell some North American OTC drugs to Prestige Brands for $661 mn)

The brands being divested b Britain's largest drug maker include Phillips MOM, Solpadeine, Dequadin, Cartia and Zantac, which collectively generated sales of approximately £60 million in 2011.

GSK said that the net cash proceeds from the transaction are expected to be approximately £135 million, which will be returned to shareholders during 2012. 

In February 2011, GSK said that it will divest its non-core Consumer Healthcare OTC products in order to focus on priority brands and markets.

Since then, it has divested it OTC brands in the US, Canada and in Europe and has realised approximately £981 million and the net cash proceeds are approximately £690 million.