Cerberus lines up €500m Bayer unit

Cerberus Capital Management, the US turnaround specialist, is reported to be in exclusive talks to buy German drug giant Bayer’s blood products unit for over €500 million.

According to Reuters, Cerberus is bidding for the blood products unit of Bayer alongside Precision Pharma, a services provider to the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. The two New York-based firms are reported to be in exclusive talks regarding a deal of around €500 million.

The report said that, according to sources, Cerberus and Precision Pharma had moved ahead of Bain Capital and Carlyle Group in the bid race after outbidding them and that a deal was possible by the end of the month.

The deal would form part of a reorganisation being undertaken by Bayer. Last month it announced the acquisition of Roche’s over-the-counter unit and the creation of Lanxess, a spinoff comprising most of its chemicals and some of its polymer unit.

The blood products unit was put up for sale last October after discussions regarding a possible blood products joint venture with Aventis fell through. The sale excludes the unit’s haemophilia drug Kogenate.

In May, Cerberus and Goldman Sachs Whitehall Fund led a consortium that agreed to buy GSW Group, a property association, from the Berlin government for €1.97 billion.