April 11, 2012 3:19 pm

Pfizer collects infant bids as partnership breaks up, sources say

This article is provided to FT.com readers by dealReporter—a news service focused on providing insightful intelligence on event driven situations to investors. www.dealreporter.com

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Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) collected bids last week for its Wyeth baby nutrition unit, two sources with knowledge of the situation told dealReporter.

A spokesperson for the New York-based pharmaceuticals giant said the company continues to evaluate alternatives for the business, including a spin-off and sale, but would not comment on the bid deadline.

Nestle appears to be the clear leader in the process, the first source said. Danone also tabled a bid, the second source said. It was previously reported that Mead Johnson (NYSE:MJN) and Danone had partnered to jointly acquire Pfizer’s baby nutrition business, but the second source said that partnership has since dissolved.

The two sources said that no firm decision had been made on whether the Pfizer unit would be sold or spun off tax-free to shareholders. If the price offered by the bidders is not deemed sufficient, a spin-off could still occur.

Nestle and Danone could not be reached by press time.

As has been reported, Morgan Stanley and Centerview Partners are advising Pfizer on the infant nutrition business sale.

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