Perrigo’s Board of Directors has approved a plan to separate the company's Prescription Pharmaceuticals (Rx) business, following a strategic portfolio review.

“The Board believes a separation of the Rx business will better enable this unique asset to capitalize on its platform of differentiated generic pharmaceutical products and allows Perrigo to focus on expanding its leading consumer business,” the company said in a statement.

“The Board will consider all value-enhancing options, including a possible tax-efficient separation to shareholders, a sale or merger.”

The Rx portfolio includes topical generic medicines in multiple dosage forms, including creams, foams, mousses, gels, liquids and inhalable products.

Chairman of the Board, Rolf Classon, added: "Perrigo's consumer and Rx platforms are both well positioned, but they are also navigating divergent industry dynamics with unique strategic, financial and operational opportunities and requirements.

“For these reasons, the Board believes the differentiated and diversified Rx business has the potential to realise greater value outside of Perrigo. After a rigorous analysis of the Rx business, we believe that fully pursuing this separation is in the best interest of Perrigo shareholders.”

Perrigo has been subject to limitations to efficiently separate its businesses to shareholders since its acquisition of Elan Corporation, but those limitations are set to expire in December 2018.  The separation is currently expected to be completed during the second half of 2019.