Blackstone Group LP, Carlyle Group LP and KKR & Co. are among buyout firms in talks with banks for financing to back their bids for Valeant Pharmaceutical International Inc.’s Australian drug unit, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Indicative bids for Valeant’s iNova Pharmaceuticals business were submitted this month, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak publicly. The sale may fetch about A$1 billion ($773 million), the people said.
Valeant is selling iNova after a tumultuous period when its stock price slumped 90 percent over 15 months amid outrage over skyrocketing drug prices and government investigations. Its new management cut the annual profit forecast this week to well below estimates amid declining sales at some of its key prescription businesses and a bleak outlook for its generic unit.
An external spokesman for Blackstone in Sydney said he couldn’t immediately comment, while Hong Kong-based spokeswomen for Carlyle and KKR declined to comment. Representatives for Valeant couldn’t be reached for comment outside regular business hours in Canada.
Valeant, based in Laval, Quebec, bought iNova in 2011 from private equity firm Archer Capital for A$625 million upfront, with the agreement to pay an additional A$75 million when certain milestones were hit. iNova sells and distributes prescription and over-the-counter products including Nyal cough medicine and Difflam sore throat treatments, according to its website.