Nestle pays billions for Pfizer infant food arm

Swiss food giant Nestle said on Monday it has agreed to pay $11.85 billion to acquire infant food maker Pfizer Nutrition, which generates about 85 percent of its sales from emerging markets.

“Pfizer Nutrition is an excellent strategic fit and this acquisition underlines our commitment to be the world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company,” Nestle chief executive Paul Bulcke said in a statement.

The group added that the takeover would “complement our existing infant nutrition business perfectly.”

Nestle estimates that Pfizer Nutrition’s sales would reach about $2.4 billion in 2012.

Financial media have in the past weeks been speculating about an imminent acquisition by the Swiss group, which has significant funds after it sold eyecare giant Alcon to Novartis in 2010 for $51.6 billion.

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