Bloomberg News

Pfizer Buys Maker of Emergen-C Vitamin Alacer to Add to Supplements Line

February 27, 2012

Pfizer Inc. (PFE), the world’s largest drugmaker, has agreed to buy closely held Alacer Corp., which makes dietary supplements including the vitamin C product Emergen-C.

Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed by New York-based Pfizer, which plans to divest its nutritional and animal health units. Alacer, based in Foothill Ranch, California, makes about 500 million packets of the vitamin powder each year, Pfizer said today in a statement announcing the deal. A 30-pack of Emergen-C sells for $9.99 on the drugstore Walgreen Co. (WAG)’s website.

“Emergen-C products add to and greatly complement our market-leading dietary supplement portfolio,” Paul Sturman, president of Pfizer Consumer Healthcare, said in the statement.

The brand will become part of Pfizer’s consumer health-care business, which was acquired with the 2009 purchase of Wyeth. The unit made up 4.5 percent of Pfizer’s 2011 revenue in 2011. Pfizer’s dietary supplements line has more than $1 billion in sales, and the largest product is the Centrum brand multivitamin.

Shares of Pfizer rose less than 1 percent to $21.26 at the close in New York.

In 2011, Pfizer bought Danish vitamins company Ferrosan from Altor Equity Partners AB, a private equity fund, for an undisclosed amount.

To contact the reporter on this story: Drew Armstrong in New York at darmstrong17@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reg Gale at rgale5@bloomberg.net


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