Savient Pharmaceuticals says that it has agreed to sell its global biologics manufacturing business to privately-held Swiss company, Ferring, for $80 million dollars in cash.

Under the terms of the agreement, Savient will receive the $80 million in three installments – $55 million at closing, $15 million on the first anniversary of closing, and a further $10 million on the second anniversary of closing. Savient expects to realise $70 million in proceeds over the next two years, after tax and other expenses.

The closing of the transaction, which has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies but remains subject to governmental and regulatory clearance. Is expected to take place during the first half of the year.

Savient says that the divestment is part of its new strategic direction, which will see it concentrate its efforts on the full development of its pipeline products. It is planning to use the proceeds from the unit’s sale to fund its lead drug candidate, Puricase, which is nearing completion of Phase II clinical trials in the treatment of severe, refractory gout, and to in-license compounds both in the clinical development phase as well as ones already on the market, particularly in the field of rheumatology, its key area of focus.