WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced Dec. 28 that Boehringer Ingelheim has agreed to divest five types of animal health products in the United States before finalizing its proposed asset swap with Sanofi of Paris. The FTC had alleged the swap likely would be anti-competitive.
Boehringer Ingelheim had planned to swap its $7.98 billion consumer health care business unit along with $5.54 billion in cash for Sanofi’s $13.53 billion animal care subsidiary, Merial.
According to the FTC, the swap would harm competition for a variety of vaccines for companion animals and certain parasite control products for cattle and sheep in U.S. markets. Specifically, competition could be harmed for canine vaccines, feline vaccines and rabies vaccines. Additionally, the swap could lead to higher prices and reduced services for consumers.
To settle these allegations, Boehringer Ingelheim will divest two product groups before finalizing the swap with Sanofi. Boehringer Ingelheim’s animal vaccines will be sold to Eli Lilly, while its parasite control products will go to Bayer AG.
The FTC voted 3-0 to issue the complaint and accept the proposed consent order, which will go before public comment for 30 days.