THL Said To Lead In Auction For Glaxo Drugs

Thomas H. Lee Partners LP is in the lead to buy consumer-health assets from the world’s No. 2 drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline Plc and a deal may be announced soon, according to sister news service Reuters, citing a Bloomberg report

Glaxo had been hoping to receive second-round bids for a clutch of its non-prescription drugs—which include its diet pill Alli, Lactacyd soap, FiberChoice diet supplements and Nytol sleep aid—by mid-November, Reuters reported in October.

The brands, which are mainly available in the United States and Europe, account for about 10 percent of Glaxo’s revenue from consumer products in 2010. A spokesperson for Thomas H. Lee declined to comment. GlaxoSmithKline was not immediately available for comment.

Private equity firms Bain Capital LLC and The Blackstone Group LP, which has partnered with Prestige Brands Holdings Inc. USA!! , have also put in a joint bid, the people said. Bain, Blackstone and Prestige Brands were not immediately available for comment.

(Soham Chatterjee is a correspondent for Reuters in Bangalore.)