Novartis a step closer to Alcon purchase

July 21, 2008

Novartis has completed the first stage of its purchase of 74 million shares of common stock of Alcon. This step maintains Nestle as the majority shareholder of Alcon, with 52% of the company's issued capital, and establishes Novartis as a minority shareholder, holding 24.85% of Alcon's shares.

Novartis has completed the first stage of its purchase of 74 million shares of common stock of Alcon. This step maintains Nestle as the majority shareholder of Alcon, with 52% of the company's issued capital, and establishes Novartis as a minority shareholder, holding 24.85% of Alcon's shares.

The announcement follows the signing, on April 6, 2008, of the initial agreement between Nestle and Novartis.

Pursuant to Novartis's purchase of Alcon shares, the Alcon board of directors has incorporated two new members - James Singh, executive vice president and chief financial office of Nestle, and Daniel Vasella, MD, chairman and chief executive officer of Novartis - taking the total number of Alcon board members up to 10.

The agreement signed by Novartis and Nestle has options (valid January 1, 2010–July 31, 2011) allowing for Novartis to purchase Nestle's shares of Alcon, giving Novartis 77% of Alcon's shares and making Novartis the majority shareholder of Alcon.