Merck Transfers Abbott Rights for Niaspan Outside the U.S.

DARMSTADT, Germany, July 18, 2007 – Merck KGaA announced today that it will give Abbott its rights for Niaspan®, a nicotinic acid product for lipid management.

Abbott, which acquired Kos Pharmaceuticals Inc. at the end of 2006 and is marketing Niaspan in the United States, will take over marketing and distributing the product in the former Merck territories. Merck entered into an agreement in 2002 with Kos of Miami, Florida, for marketing rights to Niaspan worldwide excluding North America and Japan.

Merck sales of Niaspan in 2006 were EUR 7.0 million.

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Merck is a global pharmaceutical and chemical company with sales of EUR 6.3 billion in 2006, a history that began in 1668, and a future shaped by 35,091 employees in 62 countries. Its success is characterized by innovations from entrepreneurial employees. Merck's operating activities come under the umbrella of Merck KGaA, in which the Merck family holds an approximately 70% interest and free shareholders own the remaining approximately 30%. In 1917 the U.S. subsidiary Merck & Co. was expropriated and has been an independent company ever since.

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Posted: July 2007


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