Sanofi-Aventis completes acquisition of Chattem

PARIS A leading global pharmaceutical company has completed its acquisition of a consumer healthcare products manufacturer.

Sanofi-Aventis said that Chattem Inc. officially has become a a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Sanofi-Aventis Group, strengthening its presence in the U.S. consumer healthcare market.

Sanofi-Aventis completed its tender offer of Chattem last month. There also has been speculation that the company is looking to make a stake in the OTC market with other acquisitions. Sanofi-Aventis said Thursday that the acquisition provides new channels for maximizing the potential of converting Sanofi-Aventis' prescription medicines to over-the-counter products.

Chattem, Sanofi-Aventis' U.S. consumer healthcare division, will be headquartered in Chattanooga, Tenn.  and led by current Chattem CEO Zan Guerry. Guerry will lead the U.S. consumer healthcare business reporting to Greg Irace, president and CEO, Sanofi-Aventis U.S.

"The addition of Chattem to our worldwide portfolio of leading consumer healthcare businesses represents an important milestone in Sanofi-Aventis' strategy to become a global diversified healthcare leader," said Christopher Viehbacher, Sanofi-Aventis CEO. "Chattem's existing sales, marketing and distribution teams and infrastructure provide a tremendous platform for future conversions of prescription medicines to OTC products in the U.S., and I am confident that Chattem will maximize the success of those conversions.  I look forward to working with Zan Guerry and the Chattem leadership team, who will play a key role in the performance of our consumer healthcare activities."

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