Catalent Pharma Solutions says it's selling its Philadelphia packaging operation

Catalent Pharma Solutions said in a statement that it recently signed a "definitive agreement" to sell its U.S. commercial packaging operations based in Northeast Philadelphia and Woodstock, Ill., to a company affiliated with Frazier Healthcare, which is a West Coast-based venture capital firm.

The Catalent statement said "the transaction is subject to certain closing conditions and is expected to close in the next few months."

Catalent is controlled by the Blackstone Group. Blackstone paid about $3.3 billion to Cardinal Health for Catalent in 2007.

Catalent's U.S. headquarter is in Somerset, N.J., but it has operations on five continents.

The 427,908-square foot packaging plant on Red Lion Road in Northeast Philadelphia is the largest of the company's facilities, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

However, Catalent specifically said the separate Philadelphia facility that is in the clinical supply services division will not be sold, nor will the the Blow-Fill-Seal business in Woodstock. The announcement did not mention the Mount Laurel facility as being part of the sale.

Catalent said the sale does not involve any commercial packaging activity outside North America.

"Catalent’s decision to sell its U.S. commercial packaging operations is based on the company’s business strategy to focus on growing its world leading businesses in development solutions and advanced delivery technologies, clinical trial supplies, advanced blow/fill/seal aseptic delivery technology for respiratory, ophthalmic and other products, as well as offering integrated solutions for the development and supply of injectable biologics and complex pharmaceutical products," Catalent said in the statement.