Germany's Bayer to buy Merck consumer business

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

BERLIN (AP) — Germany's Bayer AG says it plans to buy U.S. pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. Inc.'s consumer care business, whose products include the Coppertone suncare range, Claritin allergy medicine and the Dr. Scholl's footcare products, for $14.2 billion.

Bayer CEO Marijn Dekkers said Tuesday that the planned acquisition "marks a major milestone on our path towards global leadership in the attractive non-prescription medicines business."

Bayer said that it also has entered an agreement with Merck to cooperate on developing potential cardiovascular treatments, with Merck initially paying Bayer $1 billion and further payments contingent on sales.