Merck to Streamline Business, Separate Into 2 Companies

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Merck & Co. Inc. unveiled plans Wednesday to spin off products from its women’s health and biosimilars businesses, along with certain legacy brands, into a new independent and publicly traded company.

Going forward, Merck (NYSE: MRK) will focus on its oncology, vaccines, hospital medicine and animal health segments.

Merck expects the spinoff to be completed by the first half of 2021. The pharmaceutical giant anticipates cost savings of more than $1.5 billion — primarily in areas such as manufacturing and sales staff costs — by 2024. In addition, Merck said by continuing to increase investments in its key growth drivers and pipeline assets, it is targeting operating margins to grow to more than 40% in 2024.

The nearly 90 products shifting to the new company, which include cholesterol drugs Zetia and Vytorin and the contraceptive Nexplano, generate annual sales of $6.5 billion.

Based in Kenilworth, New Jersey, Merck has a large research and manufacturing plant in West Point, Montgomery County. The company, which has about 69,000 employees worldwide, including 12,000 in the Philadelphia suburbs. has a look at how the spinoff is expected to be headquartered in New Jersey, click here.

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