Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) today announced the next steps in the strategic alternatives review process for the company's Animal Health business.
Preparations are underway to file a registration statement in the U.S. for a potential initial public offering (IPO) of a minority ownership stake in the new company. Pfizer expects to provide details regarding the proposed transaction as part of its 2012 second quarter earnings announcement.
Animal Health will continue to be treated as a continuing operation for Pfizer's financial reporting purposes. The name of the new standalone company will be Zoetis™ (zô-EH-tis).
"Pfizer Animal Health is a dynamic business with strong fundamentals, an expanding and loyal direct customer base and a proven management team," said Ian Read, chairman and chief executive officer, Pfizer.
"We are on track to create a standalone Animal Health company by our previously stated target of July 2013. Our focus continues to be on taking the actions that will generate the greatest after-tax value for our shareholders, with share repurchases remaining the case to beat in allocating cash proceeds from the separation."
The new company, Zoetis, will build on the leadership of Pfizer Animal Health in the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of a diverse portfolio of animal vaccines, medicines, biopharmaceuticals, diagnostics and genetic tests to prevent and treat disease in livestock and companion animals.
With more than 9,000 employees, the business markets its products in more than 120 countries with operations in developed and emerging markets and provides comprehensive animal health solutions to veterinarians and the livestock farmers and companion animal owners they support.
The business has an extensive research and development network and holds leading market positions across major geographic regions, including North America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Asia-Pacific. Revenues in 2011 were approximately $4.2 billion.
The name Zoetis has its root in zo, which is familiar in commonly known words such as zoo and zoology. It derives from zoetic, meaning "pertaining to life," and signals the company's dedication to improving the health of animals across species and around the world based on the fundamental understanding that animal and human health are inextricably linked.
"The name best captures the company's focus on partnership with veterinarians, livestock producers and companion animal owners by providing innovative products and solutions that advance animal health and human well-being," said Juan Ramón Alaix, president, Pfizer Animal Health.
"We are excited about Pfizer's decision to chart an independent future for the Animal Health business and about our new name, Zoetis."