January 8, 2018 / 1:51 PM / a year ago

German drugmaker Dermapharm plans March IPO - sources

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German non-prescription drugmaker Dermapharm is planning to list on the Frankfurt stock exchange before the Easter holidays, in a deal that is expected to value the company at more than 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion), people familiar with the matter said.‎

The company’s family owner has asked investment bank Berenberg to organize the initial public offering (IPO), the people added.

The IPO of Dermapharm will likely be Germany’s first stock market listing of the year, alongside the much larger flotation of Siemens’s (SIEGn.DE) Healthineers unit, the people added.

Dermapharm, which is owned by its chief executive Wilhelm Beier, was not available for comment, while Berenberg declined to comment.

The company, which makes treatments against skin diseases, insect bites and hair loss, as well as allergy drugs and dietary supplements, is expected to post earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of more than 100 million euros this year.

The planned stock market listing comes after Beier, who in 1991 starting building the company by merging several smaller healthcare groups, canceled a planned sale of the company to a private equity group in 2016.

At the time, BC Partners and Nordic Capital had vied to take control of the group.

The private equity groups had viewed the over-the-counter drugs portfolio as attractive but cared less about the group’s business in the so-called parallel trade of drugs, which they regard as having little growth potential, sources familiar with the matter had said at the time.

Some healthcare distribution firms make money by re-labelling and re-importing specific drugs from a country where these products sell at lower prices, without the explicit consent of the drugmaker.

Reporting by Arno Schuetze; Additional reporting by Alexander Hübner

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