The life sciences group, Novartis, has bought two American companies specialising in vaccines for farm animals.
The two companies are Grand Laboratories Inc and ImmTech Biologics Inc, which focus on the cattle and pig markets. They had sales of $33 million (SFr54.9 million) in 2001.
Novartis said the two firms complemented each other and added it had an "exciting" development portfolio in what it called important disease areas.
Grand Laboratories, based in Iowa, is one of the largest animal vaccine companies in the US. ImmTech Biologics, based in Kansas, concentrates on the development of products for cattle and pig rearing.
Novartis did not make the purchasing prices public. Its own animal health division employs 2000 people worldwide and has sales of SFr1.08 billion.
The US acquisitions are the latest in a series of expansion moves. In 1999, Novartis Animal Health bought the British firm, Vericore and a year later moved into the Canadian market with the acquisition of Biostar and Cobequid.
swissinfo with agencies
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