Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc (RBGLY.PK) reached agreements to resolve the investigation into the sales and marketing of a treatment for opioid addition by Indivior Plc, spun off five years ago.
Reckitt agreed to pay as much as US$1.4 billion to resolve the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission probes, the maker of Durex condoms and Lysol cleaning products said in a statement on Thursday.
The settlement avoids “the costs, uncertainty and distraction associated with continued investigations,” Reckitt said, even though the company denies any wrongdoing. U.S. prosecutors argue that the marketing of the addiction treatment deceived doctors about its dangers, contributing to a deadly epidemic of opioid abuse.
Most of the events under investigation took place before Indivior split from its former parent at the end of 2014. The settlement amount will be funded through existing borrowing facilities and cash generation, Reckitt said.
The move by Reckitt came as Indivior lifted its outlook for 2019 sales and profit after a stronger-than-forecast first half. The company said its Suboxone film opioid-addiction treatment outperformed in terms of market share, relative to expectations. Suboxone film faces competition from knockoff rivals.
Indivior now sees full-year net revenue in the range of US$670 million to US$720 million, raised from US$525 million to US$575 million. It expects net income of US$80 million to US$130 million, after earlier predicting a possible loss.