Pfizer is divesting its nutrition and animal health units as part of its plan to refocus the company on developing and selling new prescription drugs. Its two $2 billion-plus prospects include a blood thinner, Eliquis, being co-developed with Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., and a rheumatoid arthritis pill, tofacitinib.
The animal health business will be spun off in an initial public offering and stock swap before the first half of next year. The unit had $4.19 billion in sales last year.
Lyrica, used to treat pain, is now Pfizer’s top product. The pill sold $1.04 billion, up 8 percent from a year earlier. Other top drugs saw their sales decline. Second best-selling was Enbrel, for rheumatoid arthritis, which sold $893 million, down 7 percent, partly on foreign exchange rates. Pneumococcal vaccine Prevnar, which Pfizer is seeking to expand use of in older populations, sold $868 million, down 14 percent.
The drugmaker is waiting on decisions by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on tofacitinib, expected by Nov. 21, and Eliquis, due in March.
Tofacitinib could sell $2.16 billion by 2017, according to the average of three analyst estimates compiled Bloomberg. Eliquis, meanwhile, could generate $5.2 billion in sales by 2020, which will be split with Bristol-Myers, Catherine Arnold, an analyst with Credit Suisse Group AG, said in a note to clients.