HEALTH

Drive Medical Canada acquires Independent Needs Centre

BY Allison Cerra

PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y. A durable medical products manufacturer’s subsidiary has acquired a manufacturer and distributor of aids to daily living products, patient aids, ambulatory assist products, bathroom safety products and other home healthcare products in Canada.

Drive Medical said its Canada-based subsidiary, Drive Medical Canada, recently acquired Independent Needs Centre, which will continue to independently operate through its existing facility in Ontario, and continue to distribute its products throughout the Canadian market. Additionally, the Drive Canada executive team, along with Ruth Mallin, the owner of Independent Needs, and the Independent Needs’ management team, will be collaborating on the development of new products for the Canadian and U.S. markets, along with new and improved packaging.

“The acquisition of Independent Needs will enhance our growing presence in Canada and expand our product offering and customer base in the Canadian marketplace. In addition, we look forward to distributing many of the products of Independent Needs into the U.S. marketplace,” said Drive Medical chairman and CEO Harvey Diamond.

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Sanofi makes tender offer to Chattem

BY Michael Johnsen

PARIS Sanofi-Aventis on Monday announced the commencement of a tender offer through its wholly-owned subsidiary, River Acquisition, for all outstanding shares of common stock of Chattem for $93.50 per share, net to the seller in cash, without interest and less any required withholding taxes.

Sanofi-aventis first expressed interest in Chattem Dec. 20.

The tender offer is scheduled to expire at midnight, EST, on Feb. 8.

“The transaction is a significant milestone in sanofi-aventis’ transformational strategy,” the French pharmaceutical company stated in a press release. “By strengthening its presence in the U.S. consumer healthcare market, which represents 25% of the current worldwide opportunity, sanofi-aventis is further securing its position as a global, integrated healthcare company and building a significant platform for future growth.”

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YakultUSAProbiotics.com targets U.S. healthcare professionals

BY DSN STAFF

TORRANCE, Calif. Healthcare professionals in search of accurate and reliable probiotics data can now access clinical studies, free educational tools and the latest probiotics news and events on Yakult U.S.A.’s new Web site, www.yakultusaprobiotics.com.

Yakult created the online resource to help address the scientific community’s surging interest in substantiated evidence for the efficacy of probiotics and to educate about its own proprietary strain, Lactobacillus casei Shirota. Yakult has been in the probiotics business since 1930, after it cultured its exclusive strain and producing the probiotic dairy drink “Yakult” in 1935.

“Healthcare professionals often ask us ‘how is it that your probiotic strain is so powerful?'” Yakult U.S.A. senior science manager Hideyuki Shibata said. “Our founder Dr. Minoru Shirota studied thousands of bacteria, selected one amongst the strongest, and used 8 billion of them to make the Yakult drink. Today that probiotic, Lactobacillus casei Shirota, has more than 100 clinical studies demonstrating various potential benefits. The new website is a tool for healthcare professionals to access some of these studies.”

The password-protected Web site requires free registration so that only serious probiotic researchers may gain access to the clinical data.

“While we are confident in our research findings, we do not want the general population misinterpreting the data. That is why we are encouraging consumers interested in our product to continue to visit our corporate Web site www.yakultusa.com,” said Shibata.

Yakult U.S.A. is a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Yakult Honsha Co., is headquartered in Torrance, Calif.

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