took a step closer to narrowing its focus on health care by closing the $2.5 billion sale of its medical nutrition business to
The last step in Novartis's divestiture campaign is expected to come later this year when it completes the sale of the
baby foods business to Nestle for $5.5 billion. Novartis announced the
Gerber deal in April and the medical nutrition agreement last December.
Separately, Novartis signed a deal with
, a Vienna-based developer of vaccines, that gives Novartis the right to develop and market certain products. Intercell will receive an upfront payment of $368 million. The payment includes Novartis's purchase of 4.8 million new shares of Intercell stock -- the company is traded on the Vienna Stock Exchange -- giving Novartis a 16.1% stake.
Novartis has owned 6.1% of Intercell through a previous vaccine agreement signed in 2006. The latest deal requires approval by regulators, including those in the U.S.