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Alcon Debuts As Independent Company

It now trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol ‘ALC.’




GENEVA – Alcon announced the completion of its separation from Novartis, positioning the business as an independent, publicly traded company.

Alcon’s shares begin trading on the SIX Swiss Exchange and New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “ALC.”

Alcon describes itself as the largest eyecare device company in the world, with complementary surgical and vision care businesses. The company has a presence in 74 countries and serves patients in more than 140.

“For more than 70 years, Alcon has been dedicated to helping people see brilliantly and now, as an independent company, we are pursuing even more opportunities to further that mission,” said David Endicott, CEO of Alcon. “We are poised to achieve sustainable growth and create long-term shareholder value as a standalone company. We have a long history of industry firsts and, as a nimble medical device company, we are sharply focused on providing innovative products that meet the needs of our customers, patients and consumers.”

Eye care is an approximately $23 billion a year market, growing at roughly 4 percent annually, the company noted in a press release. Last year, Alcon had sales of $7.1 billion, including $4 billion in surgical – up 7 percent from the prior year – and $3.1 billion in vision care – up 3 percent.

Endicott stated: “Demand for eye care is growing significantly as our population ages and people spend more time in front of screens and mobile devices. As we mark this new chapter in the life of our company, all of us at Alcon are committed to addressing the growing consumer need for improved vision and eye health and to expanding access to quality eye care all around the world.”


The company launched a new global website that can be found at

Under the terms of the separation, each Novartis shareholder or ADR (American Depositary Receipt) holder will receive one Alcon share for every five Novartis shares or ADRs they held as of the close of business on April 1, 2019, the record date for the distribution.

As an independent company, Alcon “will have more focus and flexibility in pursuing its own growth strategy driven by rapid iterative innovation,” according to the release.

“The company will have a distinct investment identity with a more efficient capital structure that will allow it to expand markets, enter promising adjacencies and introduce new business models. These benefits, combined with Alcon’s industry-leading customer relationships, favorably position the company to achieve sustainable growth.”

Alcon is headquartered in Geneva. Its facilities in Fort Worth, TX, “will remain a major operational center and innovation hub with a large base of employees.”

Alcon stated that it will continue its corporate giving efforts, which in 2018 included $62 million in monetary and product donations. Through its charitable organizations, the Alcon Foundation and Alcon Cares, Alcon partners with hundreds of charitable organizations to help increase access to eyecare, providing sight-restoring surgeries, eye exams and other services to people in underserved communities around the world.


Alcon also sponsors hands-on and virtual eyecare provider training and skills-transfer to strengthen the level of care, and supports its communities through charitable donations and associate volunteerism.


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