Merck KGaA sells women's health business to Teva for €285 million

German pharmaceutical major Merck KGaA (Merck) said that the company would sell its women's health unit Theramex to Israel's Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd for €285 million ($389 million), in accordance with its strategy focused on core areas such as neurodegenerative diseases, oncology, fertility, rheumatology, endocrionolgy and cardiometabolic care.

Under the terms, Merck will sell its 100-per cent interest in Theramex SAM of Monaco and Theramex SpA of Italy to Teva. In addition, Merck will be eligible to receive certain performance-based milestone payments, the company said in a statement.

The acquisition will provide Teva with a strong platform to expand its global women's health business and the contraceptive market.

Elmar Schnee, member of Merck executive board and head of the Merck Serono division said, ''As Theramex is entering the contraceptive market, we firmly believe that a combination with Teva will not only contribute to growing its position in the gynaecological market but also to building a major player in the area of contraceptives.''

Teva's president and chief executive officer, Shlomo Yanai said: Theramex's diversified product portfolio, its seasoned sales force, and promising pipeline will be combined with the strong R&D capabilities and product portfolio of our US women's health business.''

Teva will have the distribution rights of Theramex products in certain countries including Spain and Brazil; Merck Serono will continue distributing Theramex products in certain other countries.