NovartisNovartis today announced its intention to separate Sandoz, its generics and biosimilars division into a new publicly traded standalone company, by way of a 100% spin-off.

The spin-off aims to maximize shareholder value by creating the #1 European generics company(1) and a global leader in biosimilars, allowing Novartis shareholders to participate fully in the potential future upside for both Sandoz and Novartis Innovative Medicines.

For both the Innovative Medicines and Sandoz businesses, the spin-off would enable enhanced focus and the ability to pursue independent growth strategies. Sandoz is expected to deliver its next wave of growth based on the existing biosimilars pipeline of 15+ molecules, a strong and experienced management team and organization. Novartis aims to become a focused innovative medicines company with a stronger financial profile, and improved return on capital.

The standalone Sandoz would be headquartered in Switzerland and listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange, with an American Depositary Receipt (ADR) program in the US.

Joerg Reinhardt, Chair of the Board of Directors of Novartis, said: "Our strategic review examined all options for Sandoz and concluded that a 100% spin-off is in the best interest of shareholders. A spin-off would allow our shareholders to benefit from the potential future successes of a more focused Novartis and a standalone Sandoz, and would offer differentiated and clear investment theses for the individual businesses. Sandoz would become the publicly traded #1 European generics company and a global leader in biosimilars based in Switzerland."

Vas Narasimhan M.D., CEO of Novartis, said: "For Novartis, the separation of Sandoz would further support our strategy of building a focused innovative medicines company, with depth in five core therapeutic areas, and strength in technology platforms. In addition, both companies would be able to focus on maximizing value creation for their shareholders by prioritizing capital and resource allocation, employing separate capital structure policies, and increasing management focus on their respective business needs."

Novartis: Focused Innovative Medicines Company

Novartis will continue expanding its strong position in five core therapeutic areas (Hematology, Solid Tumors, Immunology, Neuroscience and Cardiovascular), strength in technology platforms (Gene Therapy, Cell Therapy, Radioligand Therapy, Targeted Protein Degradation and xRNA), and a balanced geographic footprint. Novartis will also continue progressing the implementation of its new organizational structure announced in April 2022, integrating the Pharmaceuticals and Oncology business units with separate US and International commercial organizations supported by a new Strategy & Growth function and Operations unit to increase focus, strengthen competitiveness and drive synergies. Novartis remains committed to its strong investment-grade credit rating and capital allocation priorities, including our growing (CHF) annual dividend.

Sandoz: #1 European Generics Company and a Global Leader in Biosimilars

Sandoz generated USD 9.6bn sales in 2021 sales and served 100+ markets globally with a strong presence in Europe as well as in the United States and Rest of World. Sandoz would leverage its strong brand and sustain its leading global position by continuing to invest in the key strategic areas of Biosimilars, Antibiotics and Generic Medicines.

As a standalone company, Sandoz would focus on its vision to deliver access to patients, leveraging the business’ strengths and purpose-driven workforce. Sandoz would execute on a growth strategy with a focused approach to deploy resources efficiently and effectively, strengthen key platforms and deliver launch excellence. Following the proposed spin-off, Sandoz would target an investment grade credit rating, providing sufficient financial flexibility to deliver on its growth plans, invest in incremental growth opportunities, with a vision to deliver attractive dividends. An update on Sandoz’s planned dividend policy will be provided in due course. Any Sandoz dividends would be incremental to Novartis dividends.

Additional Transaction Details

Completion of the proposed spin-off is subject to satisfaction of certain conditions, including consultation with works councils and employee representatives (as required), general market conditions, receipt of favorable tax rulings and opinions, final endorsement by the Board of Directors of Novartis AG and shareholder approval. There can be no assurance regarding the ultimate timing of the proposed transaction or that the transaction will be completed. Further details of the proposed spin-off, including the proposed distribution ratio, detailed timeline and the composition of the board of directors of Sandoz will be provided at a later date.

About Novartis

Novartis is reimagining medicine to improve and extend people’s lives. As a leading global medicines company, we use innovative science and digital technologies to create transformative treatments in areas of great medical need. In our quest to find new medicines, we consistently rank among the world’s top companies investing in research and development. Novartis products reach nearly 800 million people globally and we are finding innovative ways to expand access to our latest treatments. About 108,000 people of more than 140 nationalities work at Novartis around the world.

About Sandoz

Sandoz, a Novartis division, is a global leader in generic pharmaceuticals and biosimilars. Our purpose is to pioneer access for patients by developing and commercializing novel, affordable approaches that address unmet medical needs. Our ambition is to be the world’s leading and most valued generics company. Our broad portfolio of high-quality medicines, covering all major therapeutic areas, accounted for 2021 sales of USD 9.6 billion.

1. Based on IQVIA gross sales for combined Generics and Biosimilars market, referring to March 2022