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Celesio sells off Movianto and Pharmexx

Owens & Minor buys Movianto while United Drug snaps up contract sales business

Celesio has sold two of its major subsidiary companies as part of a strategic realignment of its business.

Movianto Group, which specialises in third party logistics for the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries, has been bought by US medical products distributor and logistics provider Owens & Minor for €130m.

Meanwhile, Irish pharma services conglomerate United Drug has acquired the German contract sales and vacancy management company Pharmexx from Celesio for €35m.

German pharma services firm Celesio is in the process of paring back its business in order to increase its focus on its core pharmaceutical wholesale and pharmacies business.

Acknowledging that the Movianto sale had come quicker than planned, Celesio's CEO Markus Pinger said the deal would bring with it the opportunity to pursue partnerships with Owens & Minor.

He added: “The decision to sell is mainly driven by the buyer's reputation for quality and integrity, thus defending the best interest of the Movianto employees. With Owens & Minor, we have found a potential investor who will drive Movianto's successful development, offering new prospects. This is an all-round positive solution for all parties concerned.”

Owens & Minor, which has a U.S.-based third party logistics service but no European operations, plans to integrate the two businesses, while keeping the Movianto teams and logistics centres located across Europe intact.

Celisio's sale of Pharmexx to United Drug is expected to be completed by August, 31 once regulatory hurdles have been cleared.

Stuttgart-based Pharmexx has a presence in 18 markets in Europe, Canada and Latin America, and United Drug said the addition of the company to its existing contract sales business Ashfield would help to push it onto the global stage.

The acquisition of Pharmexx, established 13 years ago, is a “significant milestone in the development of United Drug into a truly international provider of outsourced services to healthcare manufacturers” commented Liam FitzGerald, CEO of United Drug.

13th August 2012

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