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Pharma Giant Might Sell Eyecare Division

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A turnaround isn’t progressing as quickly as expected.

The chairman of Novartis says it’s possible the pharmaceutical company will sell Alcon, its eyecare unit.

A planned turnaround at Alcon isn’t progressing as quickly as Novartis officials had hoped, Reuters reports.

Chairman Joerg Reinhardt told the Switzerland-based publication SonntagsZeitung that for the long term, “the question arises as to whether we are the best owner for Alcon.”

Alcon, whose U.S. headquarters are in Texas, makes items including contact care products, ophthalmic pharmaceuticals, dry eye products and ocular vitamins. Novartis took ownership of the company through several deals totaling $51 billion.

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Reinhardt said Novartis continues to try to turn the company around. For this quarter, he anticipates Alcon sales being flat, or even down a bit, according to SonntagsZeitung.

According to Reuters, Novartis “has blamed a failure to innovate and inconsistent customer service” for Alcon’s issues.

Read more at Reuters

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