Novo Nordisk parent to buy Catalent for $16.5 billion to expand Wegovy supply

Boxes of Novo Nordisk’s weight-loss drug Wegovy in Oslo, Norway, Nov. 21, 2023.

Victoria Klesty | Reuters

Danish drugmaker Novo Nordisk‘s parent firm, Novo Holdings, on Monday stated it would acquire drug producer Catalent in a $16.5 billion deal that might assist boost the supply of the extremely standard weight reduction injection Wegovy and diabetes shot Ozempic. 

Catalent is the principle provider of fill-finish work, which includes filling and packaging syringes and injection pens, for Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy. 

Novo Nordisk will then buy three of Catalent’s manufacturing websites from Novo Holdings for $11 billion. Novo Holdings owns virtually 77% of the voting shares in Novo Nordisk.

Novo Nordisk and Novo Holdings stated they count on the acquisition of the crops and the broader deal to buy Catalent to shut on the finish of 2024. 

Novo Nordisk added that it expects its buy to step by step assist enhance its filling capability starting in 2026. The firm already contracts the three crops, that are situated in Italy, Belgium and Bloomington, Indiana. 

Catalent shares rose about 10% in premarket buying and selling Monday after the deal announcement. The firm has a market worth of roughly $10 billion. Novo Nordisk’s inventory rose virtually 2% in premarket buying and selling, for a market worth of about $390 billion.

Shares of Novo Nordisk jumped virtually 53% final yr as Wegovy and Ozempic soared in recognition — and slipped into shortages — for their potential to assist sufferers lose vital weight over time.

The Catalent deal is the corporate’s newest effort to enhance manufacturing capability for its medicine because it faces competitors from Eli Lilly and different rising rivals within the weight reduction drug market.

Last yr, the corporate introduced plans to spend money on new manufacturing amenities in Denmark and France. Novo Nordisk additionally stated final week that it has greater than doubled the variety of Wegovy starter doses it is transport to the U.S., which permits extra sufferers to start the remedy.

Under the phrases of the deal, Novo Holdings will buy Catalent for $63.50 a share in money, a premium of 16.5% to Catalent’s closing worth on Friday.

The deal to buy Catalent has the backing of activist investor Elliott Investment Management, which has a stake within the U.S. firm, in accordance to Novo Holdings. 

Notably, a few of Catalent’s factories that manufacture Wegovy have been linked to regulatory issues up to now. Reuters reported in July that Catalent’s manufacturing unit in Brussels that fills Wegovy pens had repeatedly breached U.S. sterile-safety guidelines lately and that workers had failed to carry out required high quality checks.

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