Novartis poised for deals and possible China-IPO
A big financier of biotech deals could be back on track soon. Novartis is interested in further acquisitions, CEO Joe Jimenez said in an interview published by the "Aargauer Zeitung", a Switzerland- based newspaper.The drugmaker is also considering a possible initial public offering (IPO) in China according to news agency Reuters.
After its $51 billion buy of U.S.-listed eyecare group Alcon, paying down Novartis' debt of $22 billion was the group's first priority. It should be able to achieve this relatively soon thanks to its strong cash flow. "We could soon be in the position to go for acquisitions again, even if they are not as big as Alcon," Jimenez said in an interview on Monday. Jimenez also said Novartis expects to meet its goal of increasing revenue at least 10 percent in 2011 and improving its profitability, assuming constant exchange rates, and that the drugmaker was on track to further increase its core operating income margin in constant currencies.