Novo Nordisk’s Strategic Filling Expansion

8 February 2024

Novo Nordisk Expands Filling Capacity with Acquisition of Three Catalent Sites

In a strategic move aimed at furthering its commitment to serving individuals affected by diabetes and obesity, Novo Nordisk has announced the acquisition of three fill-finish sites from Novo Holdings A/S. This development is part of a larger transaction involving the acquisition of Catalent, Inc., a global contract development and manufacturing organization headquartered in Somerset, New Jersey.

Novo Nordisk’s acquisition of the three filling sites in Anagni (Italy), Brussels (Belgium), and Bloomington (Indiana, US) aligns with the company’s overarching strategy to enhance manufacturing capacity, providing scalability and flexibility within its existing supply network. The three sites, specializing in the sterile filling of drugs, currently employ more than 3,000 individuals and have established collaborations with Novo Nordisk.

The agreement, finalized with an upfront payment of 11 billion USD, reflects Novo Nordisk’s dedication to expanding its reach to those living with diabetes and obesity. Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, President and CEO of Novo Nordisk, expressed enthusiasm about the acquisition, stating, “We are very pleased with the agreement to acquire the three Catalent manufacturing sites which will enable us to serve significantly more people living with diabetes and obesity in the future.”

The acquisition is anticipated to boost Novo Nordisk’s filling capacity gradually, with the impact expected to be noticeable from 2026 onwards. This move comes in conjunction with Novo Nordisk’s substantial investments in active pharmaceutical ingredients facilities, providing strategic flexibility to its existing supply network.

The three manufacturing sites, with a focus on sterile drug filling, are integral to Novo Nordisk’s long-term vision of advancing treatments for diabetes and obesity. The sites in Italy, Belgium, and the US have ongoing collaborations with Novo Nordisk, further strengthening the synergy between the entities.

The transaction involves Novo Nordisk acquiring the sites from a subsidiary of Novo Holdings as part of the larger deal where the subsidiary of Novo Holdings acquires Catalent through a merger. The completion of the acquisition is expected towards the end of 2024, contingent on meeting customary closing conditions, including approvals from Catalent shareholders and regulatory authorities.

Acknowledging the potential impact on operating profit growth, Novo Nordisk foresees a low single-digit negative impact in both 2024 and 2025. As the acquisition is primarily debt-financed, it will not affect the previously communicated share buyback program of DKK 20 billion.

After the merger of Catalent and the Novo Holdings subsidiary, Novo Nordisk will take ownership of the three Catalent sites, honoring all customer obligations. The upfront payment of 11 billion USD encompasses the enterprise value for the sites, with adjustments for transaction expenses and changes in certain net debt items until closing.

Novo Nordisk’s commitment to the acquisition is evident in the financial commitments and regulatory undertakings provided to Novo Holdings. The company’s Board of Directors, along with independent financial advisor Evercore, has approved the acquisition, deeming it in the best interest of Novo Nordisk and its shareholders.

With this strategic acquisition, Novo Nordisk solidifies its position as a leading player in the pharmaceutical industry, poised to make a significant impact on the lives of individuals grappling with diabetes and obesity. The company’s dedication to innovation and expansion underscores its commitment to addressing the evolving healthcare needs of a global population.