$1bn deal brings together medical device units, as Pfizer focuses on Hospira’s biosimilars and generics

Pfizer has agreed to sell its infusion therapy business, Hospira Infusion Systems, to ICU Medical in a deal worth $1 billion (£809 million) in cash and shares.

The medical devices unit was formerly part of injectables specialist Hospira, which Pfizer bought for $17 billion in 2015 to gain access to its generics and biosimilars business. In the process of integrating Hospira into its operations, Pfizer is closing one Hospira manufacturing plant and several US distribution centres.

ICU will hand over $600 million in cash and $400 million in newly issued shares. The transaction, which is expected to close in early 2017, will give Pfizer an approximately 17% stake in ICU and the right to appoint one director to the company’s board.

Hospira had effectively been ICU’s largest single customer since 1995, following a distribution agreement that enabled it to sell ICU’s needle-free technology alongside its own infusion systems.