McKesson expands European pharmaceutical distribution wing

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN FRANCISCO — McKesson on Friday bought the pharmaceutical distribution division of Ireland's UDG Healthcare in a cash transaction valued at $466.5 million. The day's announcement follows McKesson’s recent agreement to acquire 281 pharmacies operated by Sainsbury’s in the United Kingdom. 
“The acquisition of UDG’s pharmaceutical distribution, home and travel healthcare businesses in Ireland and the U.K., will strengthen our position in the industry," stated Marc Owen, chairman of the management board at Celesio, the European business within McKesson’s Distribution Solutions segment. "We have made this investment as part of our growth strategy which leverages the positive trajectory of the wider healthcare sector in Europe. This acquisition will also complement our broader portfolio of assets in both Ireland and the United Kingdom.”
Under the terms of the agreement McKesson will acquire: United Drug and United Drug Sangers, leading wholesale operations across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland; TCP, a leading home healthcare provider in the Republic of Ireland; and MASTA, UDG’s travel healthcare business based in the United Kingdom.
The acquired operations will be reported as part of McKesson’s International Pharmaceutical Distribution and Services business under the leadership of Owen.
The transaction is subject to UDG shareholder approval and EU competition clearance, among other customary closing conditions and is expected to close in the first half of calendar year 2016.

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