As of November 2015, Novartis no longer produces vaccines, according to FierceVaccines. In April 2014, Novartis announced it had divested itself of its vaccines unit except for flu vaccines, and transferred it to GlaxoSmithKline in exchange for its oncology products. Novartis initiated a separate agreement to sell its flu vaccine business. The pharmaceutical company completed the flu vaccine business transaction in July 2015, when it transferred the business to CSL, an Australian company, for $275 million.
The Novartis flu vaccine business divestiture removed the Swiss company from the vaccines marketplace, explains FierceVaccines. In 2006, Novartis completed a buyout of Chiron that continually caused problems for the pharmaceutical company. In October 2014, when it first announced the flu vaccine sales agreement, Novartis agreed to an impairment charge of $1.1 billion. The vaccine unit transfer increased CSL's assets by more than 1,000 employees, two plants and additional technology. CSL became the world's second-largest flu vaccine supplier and renamed its vaccine unit Seqirus to reflect the company's advances.
GlaxoSmithKline agreed to pay Novartis $7.1 billion plus royalties for the company's vaccine units, notes FierceVaccines. Novartis received a $5.25 billion payment initially and expects $1.8 billion in milestones. The Novartis product portfolio includes pharmaceuticals, eye care products and generic medications, according to the company.