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Novartis Announces Intention to Spin Off Alcon

Novartis has announced that they intend to seek shareholder approval to spin off 100% of Alcon’s eye care device business into a standalone, separately traded company.

The new company would be incorporated in Switzerland, with major operations remaining in Fort Worth. Alcon’s ophthalmology pharmaceuticals portfolio would remain with Novartis.

Alcon CEO Mike Ball would become Chairman-designate; COO, and David Endicott would be promoted to Alcon CEO, both appointments effective July 1, 2018.

Joerg Reinhardt, Chairman of Novartis, said: “Our strategic review examined all options for Alcon ranging from retention, sale, IPO to spinoff. The review concluded that a spinoff would be in the best interests of Novartis shareholders and the Board of Directors intends to seek shareholder approval for a spinoff at the 2019 AGM. This transaction would allow our shareholders to benefit from potential future successes of a more focused Novartis and a standalone Alcon, which would become a publicly traded global medtech leader based here in Switzerland.”

Novartis also announced that it will initiate a share buyback of up to USD 5 billion to be executed by the end of 2019.

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