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Perrigo Brands to Boost Sales After Record Year, CEO Says

Perrigo Co., the largest U.S. maker of generic over-the-counter drugs, aims to top last year’s record sales by expanding its store brand business and offering new products, Chief Executive Officer Joseph Papa said.

Perrigo will add about $190 million in revenue by selling 45 new drugs in fiscal 2012, about the same number it introduced last year when reporting $2.76 billion in sales, Papa, 56, said in a telephone interview from Allegan, Michigan. Revenue will rise 17 percent to $3.23 billion in 2012, according to the median estimate of 14 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

The company, which bought B’nei Brak, Israel-based Agis Industries Ltd. in 2005, is benefiting as consumers switch from more expensive brand names amid sluggish economic growth. Data showed today that sales at U.S. retailers in December rose less than analysts predicted and more Americans than forecast filed applications for unemployment benefits last week.

“It’s still a very challenging economy,” said Papa, who is a pharmacist by training. “Consumers have to cut back and they get between 25 percent to 30 percent in savings.”

The company was added to the Standard & Poor’s 500 and Nasdaq 100 indexes last year after its market share jumped following a 54 percent gain in the New York stock.

45 Billion Tablets

Perrigo, which produces 45 billion pharmaceutical tablets a year, was little changed at $97.44 by 2:29 p.m. in New York after shares in Tel Aviv dropped 1.2 percent to 376.60 shekels, or the equivalent of $98.28.

The United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan ruled in Perrigo’s favor in patent litigation involving Adams Respiratory Therapeutics Inc.’s Mucinex tablets, the drugmaker said in a statement today.

The company, whose products are sold at CVS Caremark Corp. and Walgreen Co., also sells store-branded versions of AstraZeneca Plc’s Prilosec OTC heartburn medicine and Johnson & Johnson’s Zyrtec allergy treatment.

Perrigo plans more mergers and acquisitions after signing an agreement this week to buy all of the assets of Can-Am Care, a privately held Georgia-based distributor of diabetes care products for about $36 million in cash.

The company is looking to focus on the diabetes, wound care, pet care, and adult nutrition segments for further M&As, Papa said. The company, which currently gets 20 percent of sales from outside the U.S., will also look to expand its global footprint, he added.

“We continue to look for appropriate mergers and acquisitions,” Papa said. “We think there’s an opportunity to do more in order to get our business to be more global.”

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