Teva sells animal drug unit to Bayer for up to $145 million

Teva Pharmaceuticals, which recently changed leadership and is re-examining what it plans to focus on, said Friday morning that it sold its animal health unit to Bayer for up to $145 million.

Teva is based in Israel, but its Americas headquarters is in North Wales, Montgomery County, and it has other facilities in the Philadelphia region.

The animal unit includes a manufacturing site in St. Joseph, Mo., and about 300 employees, according to a statement from Teva.

Teva gets $60 million up front and then could get up to $85 million more if those products meet manufacturing and sales targets.

The deal would likely close in 2013, but the U.S. Federal Trade Commission will examine the arrangement on antitrust grounds.

Teva said in the statement that the sale allows it to give more attention to human health products.

“We are pleased with the sale of our animal healthcare business to Bayer HealthCare, a leader in animal healthcare,” Itzhak Krinsky, Teva executive vice president and head of business development, said in a statement. “Today’s transaction represents a successful outcome for both parties and is a part of our global strategic planning. We are committed to making disciplined decisions that focus on our core businesses and strategically position the company as setting a new standard in both generic and branded medicines. As part of our overall strategy to refine our global footprint, we will continue to leverage our product portfolio and R&D efforts while selling or out-licensing assets that no longer fit within the scope of our business.”

Jeremy Levin took over as chief executive officer in May and he has said he is assessing what direction the company should take, with those plans to be announced in December. Among the plans on hold is a facility in North Philadelphia.

Teva is the world leader in generic sales, but it sought to diversify and add branded drugs with the $6.8 billion purchase of Frazer-based Cephalon in 2011. The Teva board installed Levin in hopes of boosting its share price and reinvigorating its sales.