Allergan Inc. said it expects to sign a deal to sell its troubled Lap-Band weight-loss unit in the first half of this year as the Irvine company pursues growth from other products and recent acquisitions.
Allergan said it would consider offers for the weight-loss business and predicted it would sign a sales agreement in the first half of 2013. The company said it expects to incur "a disposal loss" in the first quarter related to a write-down of the assets for sale.
"Shedding Lap-Band will boost overall growth," David Pyott, Allergan's chairman and chief executive, said on a conference call with analysts and investors. "We are dynamically managing our portfolio to drive long-term sales growth."
The company said Lap-Band revenue fell for the sixth consecutive quarter. Sales for the obesity intervention business, which includes Lap-Band, declined 22% to $36.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared with the same period a year earlier.
The Lap-Band is a silicone ring that is implanted around the stomach to discourage patients from overeating.
Overall, Allergan reported that fourth-quarter profit increased 16% to $324.2 million, or $1.06 a share, compared with $279.8 million, or 90 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue in the quarter grew 8% to $1.51 billion.
Sales of Botox rose 14% in the quarter to $474.6 million. Last month, Allergan said it had agreed to acquire MAP Pharmaceuticals Inc., which develops therapies for migraine headaches, for $958 million.
Shares of Allergan were up $1.36, or 1%, to $106.43 in midday trading Tuesday.
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