Sanofi (EURONEXT: SAN and NYSE : SNY) today announced that its US Consumer Healthcare Division, Chattem, Inc., completed the acquisition of the worldwide rights to the Rolaids brand from McNeil Consumer Healthcare Division of McNEIL-PPC, Inc.
"The addition of Rolaids represents a rare opportunity to obtain an iconic brand that we believe will respond positively to our proven approach of growing brands through innovation and advertising," said Zan Guerry, Chief Executive Officer, Chattem. "We are primed to leverage the Rolaids market opportunity to drive incremental growth and take the brand to a new level."
Rolaids is an over-the-counter antacid that helps relieve heartburn and acid indigestion. The product was first introduced in 1954 and over the years it has been a top selling gastro-intestinal category brand. Chattem will re-launch Rolaids and expects the product to be available at retailers within a year.
"This acquisition is consistent with our long-term strategy, which includes growing our consumer healthcare offering as part of a broader diversification strategy," said Anne Whitaker, President, North America Pharmaceuticals, Sanofi. "Chattem has a proven track record of successful acquisitions and integrations and the addition of Rolaids, an enduring brand with a deep heritage, further diversifies the company's portfolio."
In 2008, Sanofi identified consumer healthcare as a core growth platform for the company and subsequently acquired -based Chattem in March 2010. The acquisition of Chattem provided Sanofi with a presence in the U.S. consumer healthcare market, which represents 25 percent of the current worldwide market. In the Spring of 2011, Chattem and Sanofi launched Allegra over-the-counter (OTC) in what has proven to be one of the most successful OTC launches in the U.S.