Premier has divested its controversial equity stake in American Pharmaceutical Partners, Los Angeles, and come away from the deal with about $29.8 million. American Pharmaceutical, which manufactures injectable generic drugs, said it repurchased 2.9 million shares owned by Premier Purchasing Partners in a privately negotiated deal as part of a larger $36 million stock-repurchase program. Group purchasing contracts between the drugmaker and Premier were not affected. The drugmaker plans to repurchase the remaining $6.2 million in stock through open market transactions. Premier had accepted an equity interest in the company in lieu of the customary administrative fees. Officials with the alliance declined to specify its return on the investment. Recently questions have been raised about the appropriateness of group purchasing organizations owning stakes in the companies with which they contract. An industry code of conduct released yesterday does not prohibit equity interests but specifies that the interest must demonstrably benefit GPO members. Click here for coverage of the code of conduct in yesterday's Daily Dose. -- by Cinda Becker
Premier divests equity stake in generic drugmaker
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