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Last Updated: Monday, 28 November 2005, 14:00 GMT
Novartis sells its nutrition unit
Novartis headquarters in Basle, Switzerland
Novartis wants to concentrate on pharmaceutical and health activities
Swiss pharmaceutical group Novartis has sold its dietary food business to private equity group ABN Amro Capital France for 220m euros ($258.6m; 151m).

Novartis said it will divest its Nutrition and Sante, division which markets slimming and sports brands including the Isostar sports drink.

The unit, no longer considered a core business, also sells products under the names Gerble, Cereal and Gerlinea.

The deal will be concluded in the first quarter of 2006 if regulators approve.

"Novartis wants to concentrate on pharmaceutical and health activities," said Paul Choffat, head of the firm's consumer health division.

The nutrition and health unit, based in Revel, France, had sales of 245m euros and operating income of 31m euros in the year to September.

It is mainly active in France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg.




SEE ALSO:
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