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Bayer Acquires Herbal Medicine Maker Steigerwald

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 27 May 2013
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Pharmaceutical giant Bayer AG (Leverkusen, Germany) has agreed to buy privately held Steigerwald Arzneimittelwerk (Darmstadt, Germany), a maker of herbal treatments.

The acquisition is seen as a strategic move by Bayer to strengthen its consumer care business. Steigerwald’s product portfolio includes Iberogast for the treatment of functional gastrointestinal disorders and Laif for the treatment of mild to moderate depression, among others. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, but Bayer has made known that Steigerwald had generated sales of 61.3 million Euros in 2012. The transaction is subject to fulfillment of the usual conditions, including antitrust clearance, and is expected to close at the beginning of July 2013.

“This transaction is further evidence of our commitment to augment organic growth with strategic bolt-on acquisitions. It will allow us to provide consumers with an even broader range of self-care options,” said Marijn Dekkers, CEO of Bayer AG. “This acquisition broadens our product offering for the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders and gives us the opportunity to enhance our presence in Germany, the fast-growing regions of East-Central Europe, and the CIS countries.”

“As a family-owned business, we take great pride in what we have achieved in nurturing and developing our brands,” said Klaus Möller, one of Steigerwald’s shareholders. “We believe that Bayer, with its extensive marketing, sales, distribution, and research expertise, is well positioned to take our success to the next level.”

Iberogast is a proprietary liquid blend of nine herbs, including bitter candytuft, angelica root, milk thistle fruit, celandine herb, caraway fruit, liquorice root, peppermint herb, balm leaf, and chamomile flower. It is named after the genus (Iberis) of one of its ingredients, it is also claimed to possess anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, and free radical-inhibiting properties as well as reducing gastric acid secretion.

Laif is based on St John's wort, widely known as an herbal treatment for depression, probably due to its inhibition of reuptake of neurotransmitters such as serotonin (5 HT), similar to conventional selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant drugs. The major active antidepressive constituents in St John's wort are thought to be hyperforin and hypericin, although other biologically active constituents present, for example, flavonoids and tannins, may also be involved.

Related Links:

Bayer AG
Steigerwald Arzneimittelwerk

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