Bankrupt Purdue Pharma has received approval from a U.S. judge to sell its consumer health business to a subsidiary of Arcadia Consumer Healthcare for $397 million. The sale of Avrio Health was approved by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Sean Lane, and is expected to support the launch of initiatives to compensate victims of the opioid crisis and fund addiction treatment programs.
Purdue filed for bankruptcy in 2019 over thousands of lawsuits that claim the opioid painkiller OxyContin caused the epidemic and more than 500,000 overdose deaths in the US over the last 20 years. The $10 billion settlement proposed by Purdue, which was previously challenged by the US Department of Justice’s bankruptcy watchdog, aims to direct remaining resources to combat the opioid epidemic in the United States, compensate victims and fund addiction treatment programs.
Proceeds from the sale will allow Purdue to begin liquidating its assets while it awaits the final ruling on the proposed settlement. However, Purdue attorney Eli Vonnegut highlighted that the company is hesitant to take the step towards bankruptcy due to its uncertain future and its bankruptcy plans being locked on appeal. The city of Purdue’s efforts to settle its bankruptcy lawsuits are being appealed to challenge the company’s efforts to shield its owners, members of the wealthy Sackler family.
The sale of Avrio Health to a subsidiary of Arcadia Consumer Healthcare was not involved in Purdue’s opioid business. According to court documents, Avrio Health sells over-the-counter disinfectants and laxatives. Purdue originally planned to sell the business to a non-profit company dedicated to combating opioid overdoses and opioid use disorders as part of its post-bankruptcy transition.