Sanofi buys J&J's Rolaids brand

Acid reliever has been unavailable since McNeil gutted OTC plant
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Johnson & Johnson, ($JNJ) which has been unable to produce Rolaids for two years because it is having to overhaul the over-the-counter medications plant where it was made, has found a solution. Sell the product to Sanofi ($SNY). The French drugmaker did not say how much its Chattem consumer health unit would pay for the product, but did say it sees great potential in it. "The addition of Rolaids represents a rare opportunity to obtain an iconic brand that we believe will respond positively to our proven approach of growing brands through innovation and advertising," Chattem CEO Zan Guerry said. Rolaids was among the many products recalled by J&J's McNeil Consumer Healthcare starting in 2009 because of significant problems the FDA found at its OTC plant in Fort Washington, PA. In 2011, McNeil signed a consent decree covering Fort Washington and other plants. The recalls and lost market share have reportedly cost the company $1.5 billion and it has to invest more than $100 million to retool the Fort Washington plant. Release | More